For this group exhibition, Pain Tero Flight, co-curated with Alicia Eler, participating artists were asked to interrogate the art, business and public persona of American pastoral painter Thomas Kinkade, who died in 2012. Kinkade rigorously maintained that the popularity of his work highlights the elitism in contemporary art world power structures, a position that may be less tenable in light of the last decade’s growth in popularity of contemporary art experiences. At the same time, Kinkade’s oeuvre continues to raise questions about the agency of the artist in a period of market dominance; the meaning of uniqueness and authenticity in an era of multiples and appropriation; and the endurance of the Romantic ideal of the artist.
Pain Tero Flight
Maria Bamford, Ray Anthony Barrett, Scott Marvel Cassidy, Rachel Lord, Jillian Mayer, Ralph Pugay, and (working collaboratively) Jordan Rathus and Jeremy Couillard. Co-curated with Alicia Eler.
Upfor Gallery, Portland
20 January – 27 February 2016