RSS Feed


Reclaimed, a one man show by David Taborn, runs from 2 - 21 December 2010 (exc Sundays) at Lassco Brunswick House.

Taborn writes that the mixed media piece shown draws together references to Joseph Beuys, Sigmund Freud and Richard Wagner through the famous Bruno Bettelheim case study of 1959, 'Joey the Mechanical Boy', about an autistic boy named Joey who behaved as if he were a machine: 'he could not drink, except through elaborate piping systems - liquids had to be pumped into him.

Born in Austria, Bettelheim was a Freudian child psychologist who had spent 11 months in Buchenwald concentration camp before emigrating to America. The case study describes how Joey created his own prison-heterotopia: imprisoned in his own mechanical fluids (Bettelheim states that for a long time Joey spoke about 'master-paintings' and a 'master-painting room') - Joey paradoxically became the driver of his own machine.

In the painting itself, a charred frame within the frame contains an unauthenticated work on paper by Beuys (dated 1955, the year Beuys's studio caught fire) bought by Taborn at auction, of a circle and hearts, using hare's blood and fat as the medium. Forms in the Beuys original are echoed throughout the painting as a whole (circular saw, ball-cock, melting Wagner vinyl records). Like Schrodinger's cat, the work on paper within the painting hovers uncomfortably between things that are and things that aren't: whether the work is indeed a Beuys; whether 'social sculpture' and the high aspirations of Wagner, Beuys and Bettelheim for humanity and society (the Wagnerian 'gesamtkunstwerk' which Beuys espoused) can square with their own self-generated fictions and personas, or even with their ambiguous relationship to Judaism/social fracture.

JJ Charlesworth wrote of his 2008 New York exhibition, 'Looking at David Taborn's work is always fun. This is not for a lack of seriousness on the artist's part. But that we should feel such enjoyment in observing his works, and that this enjoyment should seem unusual, perhaps even uncomfortable, does say something about the way art today is supposed to display its seriousness. Visual pleasure, vivid colour, robust, energetic, sumptuous and demotic forms - such experiences are often thought of as trivial or superficial, as somehow 'merely' a question of individual gratification or self-indulgence, when there are more sober and pressing matters in the world that art should attempt to address.'

Some of the pieces use reclaimed materials.

ID : (56616)
Date Created : 02 December 2010 01:35:32 PM
Date Modified : 02 December 2010 01:35:35 PM

Send a message :
To send a text message please put your email address and message in the box below

Email Address*
Your Message*
Please enter the text as you see in the image

Please enter the text from the image above*