Artist Profile

Marcus Cain

Visual Artist Fellow (2012)

Exhibitions/Performances (2017)

Statement of Work

For me, painting is an act of quiet and slow resistance to a hyperactive world. I construct images for that narrow delay between sight and perception - a territory between looking and seeing, where color and texture are in the service of gestures that may alternately serve as both subject and verb.

In these latest works, I employ organizing lines, not unlike tally and slash marks, hashtags and dashes that have been freed from their conformity in charts, ledgers, the Internet and written language. I use them instead to weave color, divide space and suggest densities of shadow, light, movement, atmosphere and other aspects of our elemental world.

These incremental stitches of paint are applied by dipping pieces of wood into pigment and stamping surfaces in repeated gestures that imply a directional brush stroke. Through this application, I appeal to the eye's saccadic movements to detect and read patterns by creating disruptions or breaks within accumulated marks that may not always reconcile as form.

My paintings represent a visual conversation between fragmentation, compression, and alignment of (mostly shallow) illusionistic space. My intent is to un-focus the viewer's eye and suspend it in a state of vibration - to induce a semi-meditative state of contemplation and the synesthetic experience of a feeling gaze upon tactile paintings.

Within these alignments, content represents a high-low bridge between the origins of a quotidian Midwest American childhood and narratives abstracted from adult interests in biological perception, language, memory, and the presence and absence of the figure and its attendant identities. Collectively these works are meditations on personal and universal mythologies, acts of transformation, and discovery and loss in the natural and man-made world.

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For me, painting is an act of quiet and slow resistance to a hyperactive world.

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