January 31- February 28 2020
Now That My Ladder's Gone
Ampersand International Arts
1001 Tennessee Street (between 20th and 22nd)
San Francisco, CA 94107
Thursdays and Fridays 12pm-5pm or by appointment
Let’s begin with the painting, the materiality, the skin-like quality of oil paint itself living and breathing on a surface with more present and past than any other medium. Painting with oil is not for the squeamish or faint of heart, it’s physical, messy, dangerous and sleek as an otter in its capacity to elude and delight, to shimmer and then muddy up as if saying, “no not yet, go forward by starting over.” Great oil painters, of which Deirdre White is one, dance with their medium and thus expose their own viscera in the drag of a line or the mix of a color mostly seen by surgeons or first responders.
White’s subjects, the mobile contraptions built by un-homed people, gain historical grounding though her reference to the folds of cloth and bindings found in artworks by the old masters. Tarps, blankets and tents become togas, robes and table covers and the people, mostly unseen, transform into modern day penitents on an endless pilgrimage. Yet, there are no stations of the cross, streets or hostels along the way to give meaning or shelter to their quest.
White’s capacity to see the present through the past and thereby reveal a flattening in time between a person’s housed before and un-homed now insists we simultaneously consider multiple concepts: Dignity, loss, ingenuity, despair, fate and favor, fucked and not yet fucked. That we look squarely at the brilliant colors and lush wrinkles of our uneven but collective collapse.
Tracy Wheeler, curator
September 6 - October 4 2019
Rapt: Work by Deirdre White and Don Ross
An.a.log SF Gallery 886 Capp Street San Francisco
Recipient of the Jon Imber Painting Fellowship at Vermont Studio Center