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Printmaking: Digital, Oil, Gesso on Canvas.
At a glance, these works appear expressively colorful, focused on a pleasing display of flowers. The work is actually the output of a multi-stage process that is deeply grounded in conceptualism and Buddhist tenets. They were developed from summertime participation in the artist colony on Monhegan Island (Maine), potentially the oldest artist colony in the USA.
The eight-step process directly models the Buddhist Eightfold Path:
(1) Arranging the flowers following the principles of Ikebana.
(2) Drawing with vine charcoal, the arrangement’s clarity, balance, and focus on the protective film of a piece of plexiglass.
(3) Fixing the drawing with a Matisse-like line and Mars-black pigment on one sheet of plexiglass, and removing the protective film that has the original drawing.
(4) Rapidly layering oil pigment in an expressionist manner on another piece of plexiglass.
(5) Fusing the two or more plexiglass layers so all art media is covered, and cannot be smeared by handling the front or back of the artwork.
(6) Taking high-res photographs of the front and back of the work that saves the raw data file (this is very large and not routinely used in photography – it is sometimes done with brain neuroimaging research).
(7) Working with a master printer (another academic who teaches this discipline) to print the raw data files at > 3 fold the dimensions of the plexiglass work, on gesso covered canvas, using long-lasting oil based inks (fidelity > 200 years). The plexiglass works are 14”x11”, which in printed form come out as 46”x 36”.
(8) Displaying the oil prints side-by-side, in a Rorschach manner as a 46”x72” pair. These works are printed in a limited edition (N=150), signed and numbered recto. The plexiglass artifacts are not for sale.
Tenets involved beyond the eight-step process:
(a) There is a fundamental distinction between the acts of arrangement and drawing, and the algorithmic steps deriving a fabricated work for display. Despite this, all 8 steps require a connected meditative discipline.
(b) The creative construct and its artifacts have layers, most of which are hidden.
(c) Showing what is in front and behind a work conveys a fundamental tension, as between what we like most (positive) vs. like least (negative), or what is expressive vs. organizational, or what is understood vs. what awaits discovery.
Art Bio for Breiter
Fine art training began at age four with didactic still-life drawing led by academic parents, one an art teacher, the other an art collector and scientist. Three-hour sessions started with temporal windows of 10 seconds, and progressively increased up to 20 minute drawing intervals. This French Academic process focused on still-life, and finished with his mother throwing a clothe over the objects and asking him to draw how their weight filled space. By age 10, he could render as well as a camera photographs, but shifted to focus on Albers color theory, painting, and art history. At the end of high school he rebelled by withdrawing applications to art/music schools, and moved to Chicago for pre-medical studies. In Chicago, he became enthralled with graffiti, and over two years loosened up enough to produce a tag, becoming a known roof-painter. In the late 1980’s he moved to Boston, and become affiliated with the artist-run experimental exhibition space, the (X) Gallery, Nantucket. Over the next decade, he participated in (X) Gallery installations, and received an honorable mention at the Eighth Annual SOHO International Art Competition. After the (X) Gallery disbanded, he lived in the Piano Craft Guild in Boston, and participated in exhibitions there. In 2003, he produced an installation at Newtonville Books, and was “Cover Artist of the Year” for the Journal of Managed Care Pharmacy. Subsequent work has been quite experimental, intermittently shown at group exhibitions for New England artists. At this time, he paints in a ramshackle farm west of Boston, and a studio in a converted factory in downtown Chicago. He has been a professor at the Segal Design Institute, Northwestern University, since 2011. Please see his website (www.artwithoutwalls.org) for further information.
Size: 72 W x 46 H x 0.1 in