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Martin Brief

HOPE by Martin Brief

  • Exhibition Dates: April 6 - May 2
  • Skype Lecture with the Martin Brief: April 23 12:30 - 1:15

Martin Brief, born and raised in Chicago, is an artist whose recent work, long-term, absurd drawing-based tasks, interrogates aspects of our complex social and political fabric. According to Brief, hope is a thought process that removes us from this moment and clouds our ability to see clearly see what is right in front of us. Here is a brief video, A Discussion With Martin Brief, talking about his installation Amazon God.  

 

'Hope' by Martin Brief

Artist Statement

Hope (2017–ongoing)

Hope is not simply the wish that everything in the future will be rosy and wonderful just as hopelessness does not mean that the future can only be worse than it is now. Hope is a thought process that removes us from this moment and clouds our ability to clearly see what is right in front of us. These drawings allude to the unknown, amorphous nature of the future and to the idea that hope is being able to accept and appreciate the unknown future while still being able to act in the present. Each small piece (5.625” x 7.625”) in this project begins as a carefully executed oil pastel drawing of the word “hope”. The drawing is then smudged until the word is transformed into a haphazard shape. The use of smudging rather than erasing or blacking out the word emphasizes transformation over negation or obfuscation. By physically redistributing or reorganizing the oil pastel the drawing is allowed to remain materially the same but visually radically different. In this way, each drawing is literally, physically, and figuratively “hope”.

Biography

Born and raised in Chicago, Martin Brief is an artist whose recent work, long-term, absurd, drawing-based tasks, interrogates aspects of our complex social and political fabric. Martin’s work has been exhibited in solo and group exhibitions nationally and internationally including exhibitions in New York, Paris, Zurich, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, Chicago, and St. Louis. In addition, his work is in several public collections, including the Joan Flasch Artist Book Collection at the Art Institute of Chicago, Center for Creative Photography in Tucson, Arizona and the State Foundation on Culture and the Arts in Honolulu, Hawaii. He recently received fellowships from the Howard Foundation and the MacDowell Colony. Martin’s work is represented by Danese Corey in New York. He currently lives and works in St. Louis and is an Associate Professor at Saint Louis University.

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