I think of painting

Scott Reeder

I think of painting , 2012

36 1/4 x 26 1/8 Inches
Acrylic and enamel on canvas
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About the artist

Scott Reeder

In his paintings, sculptures, and installations, Scott Reeder uses simple forms to address complex ideas and deploy cultural critique. He has become known for his cartoon-like style, expressive contour lines and bright colors, demonstrated infamously in his ”Cute Communists” series (2007) of famous communist leaders painted with doll-like cuteness. His other subjects include paintings of anthropomorphic objects, in a reconsideration of the familiar and mundane, and humorous references to iconic art historical works, as in Cops Ascending a Staircase (2009) (a reference to Marcel Duchamp’s most famous work). More recently, Reeder has begun to make a series of spaghetti paintings, in which the silhouettes of various types of cooked and uncooked spaghetti are spray painted onto a surface in abstract compositions.

Scott Reeder (b. 1970, USA) is a multi-disciplinary artist based in Chicago, Illinois and Detroit, Michigan.

Reeder’s work has been shown widely in exhibitions including at the Saatchi Gallery, Gavin Brown’s enterprise, the Daniel Reich Gallery, the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions, Jack Hanley, China Art Objects, and Pat Hearn.

In 2011, Scott Reeder was the subject of a solo exhibition, ‘Chicago Works’, at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago.

Reeder has been known to create many different types of work, including representational canvases, reductivist sculpture, neon lettering, lists and spray-paint on canvases decorated with pasta. The last of these – Reeder’s ‘Pasta Paintings’ – consist of the silhouettes of various types of cooked and uncooked spaghetti that have been spray painted onto a surface in abstract compositions.

His recent projects also include the feature film entitled ‘Moon Dust’, shot over the span of eleven years. Set a century in the future, it tells the tragic story of a failing resort located on the moon.

Central to Scott Reeder’s work is his humorous critique of the history and stylistic traditions of art-making. The artist is known for his wry sense of humour that incorporates both art-historical references and silly jokes.
Reeder does not only work with one or two artistic styles, nor does he operate within a single artistic movement. Rather, he jumps around from genre to genre, using artistic style as a contextual tool for his humorous, and often satirical, commentary.

While many artists – such as the Pictures Generation Louise Lawler (also featured) – tend to feature other artist’s work in their own pieces in order to comment on the nature and discourse of the fine-art world, Reeder is unusually innovative in his approach: mimicking their painting style, rather than substance. His mock appropriation of other artists’ styles include parodies of Caravaggio, Picasso, Duchamp, Jasper Johns, Rothko and Matisse.

Importantly, Reeder continues to value the role of mark-making and artistic expression. He does not attempt to ridicule the role of the artist, but rather, the essentialist approach often deployed in analysing and understanding the artistic frame work in which they exist.

He satirises the structured discourse of art history with jokes praised for having “the weight often given to seminal Conceptual Art”, yet he is able to do so playfully, without sacrificing the expression, emotion and character of the artist.

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