After all the calamities of the last year, all of the false certainties, and the repeated drops of the other shoe- it feels like the only assertions one can make are declarations of unknowing. And somehow unknowing seems natural to paintings, despite their physical material right thereness. In the studio, I try to resist the too-easy ones and push them around until I?m less sure of them, until they seem sure only of their own contradictions, until they hold together, yes, but not too securely. When I was younger, I read books for answers. I looked at paintings and tried to solve them, to crack the code. But paintings are like compartments resisting compartmentalization, they can open a space at home with mystery and uncertainty. And yet the means are so physical, so concrete and thingy. My paintings often resemble architectural facades, altarpieces, and vacated prosceniums. I try to construct a set of expectations and then try to subvert or question those expectations. For me, a painting is finished when it buzzes with contradictions- stable but wonky, empty yet full, spacious and compressed. Let those differences dance around each other and try to work it out.
? Matt Kleberg