Friday 19 June 2009

Brian mothereffing Dettmer guts em' at Saltworks


Holy Mother of what is insanely sacred. Books. The body as Andreas Vesalius would have respected it. Somehow it seems cold, but strangely too ironic or even playful to not also be warm and soft. Brian Dettmer sculpts. The meticulous details and the subtle indications of his mindset are often not terribly subtle at all. But so delicate,it baffles and logically intrigues to a tight extent,while at once weaving into threaded appendages,one is reminded of how fascinating it is to learn that an album is only one groove.A technical and quiet organism is brought to a new kind of life. A consolidation of types of creative experience takes place through surgery.

I thumb through a handful of publications from a shelf in the corner of Saltworks. Thorough images and write-ups of this guy's amazing talent. His nerves and attentiveness must be ice,exact-o laughing in a lockdown mode, a zone of vision. (and then there are the bloddy cassete tapes,casette tapes,my god it has been that long since i have even thought to write that word-and what he has gone and sculpted with tapes!)
Tapes melted & becoming things.Skulls that would belong to siamese twins joined by the brain. Amazing analog distinctively 80's techno-minded aminal skulls,with horns wrapped in the brown shiny inerts,the guts of the animal, whose audio branding is still legible in remnants. The faces stamped from a past life,tattoed-smeared & speckled with formerly organized fragile decorative reappropriated offalbits. Text next to photographs in magazines. Magazines sitting next to the real thing. I wish to see one of the images in the flesh. But what he is showing here in the gallery excedes enough for now.


http://images.google.com/images?sourceid=navclient&rlz=1T4GWYE_enUS277US277&q=brian+dettmer&um=1&ie=UTF-8&ei=ONI8SuHSBYPGMoS4naQO&sa=X&oi=image_result_group&resnum=4&ct=title


In Saltworks is Dettmer with two other artists crafting paper in different ways. Katy Clove & Harrison Hayes. Both stunningly careful and perfect in the creations. Transposed strangeness undulates in perfectly misplaced mismatched layers in Hayes photographic clipoholic brain. He juxtoposes and tells vignettes,& uses negative space like a genius. Clove burns and shears the most exterme in quiet gestures and expressions,tiny quiet carvings of white silhouettes- with slightly warmed and burned edges. She also draped the room with what i read to be a reference an awareness of a oneness beneath much more than any physicality- in its age and its new versions of beauty as it maintains an invisible grid, with a will of its own. Everything within it can seem to change.

But Dettmer reigns here. My god. These morphed bodies of work. Attended to with an almost morbid love,perhaps distant and unblinking he carved.or maybe he is caring,coaxes,and is softly watchful. I can almost smell the age of the freakin books,the musty pages, that almost comforting kinda gross smell. and i see the store it was found in,as if in opening the book,yet another layer has been opened by Dettmer,revealing another layer of a way to connect it to not only itself but us.

On a wall rolls a film. The film indicates a flashing distorting bit- in flipping stop- motion,as phases appear and shift in the eviscerating (how many times has that word probably come up in relation to his work?)... 3 of the books slyly shown in their process are a whole 'nother adventure and realization to this procedure. It has been recorded. Nothing is added...only removed. Amazing layers of the encyclopedia reveal themselves. In the 3 titled chronic or ...chronicals -is the same. History almost comically becomes a labyrinth.
Exposed. A woven visual mind with streaming layers of newly presented symbols,a contrasting vibration. It demands an almost respectful inability to realize how tenacious this aesthetic sacredly operates. Seriously.
One book stands with both sides organized in an analytic angular invitation. From both sides,it visually disturbs,drawing in and it wobbles with clean ridges,enundated with clean tiny text all the way through and into.
Words are used like paint.

This is my low-fi probably choking a flowery glob of over-acted words from excitedly trying too hard -acknowledgement on a -from the hairy chest level of human respect for the work(while wearing thick black frames)
I mean well- and regards beyond my awareness go to the quality of what this man has done and does.

Saltworks is located at 664 11th street NW Georgia 30318
404-881-0411 wed-fri 12-6 sat 11-5
saturday june 20th 2 artist talk at i think two oclock


last day of show is august 1st



heres where i tried again on a psycho autodidactic ego strokin mode:( i go so much to soak on that ive seen and thought,but isn't that what it's about?


Brian Dettmer: tracing the untraceable

It strikes numbers of entry points wide open. From the inside out the carved books,the objects take Burrough's described virus - language- and folding it,carving it,grafting it with itself- becomes visuals,making the thoughts that coorespond with those words coalesce-bringing communication closer to a descibed goal of total consciousness,addressing that in life that becomes before words. The signified and the signifier.
In the object,it comes to the surface,the internal made external. And then made external again,confirmed to be just a thought now,manifested solid a visual,an object. Thoughts deliberately fold on themselves and retrace through a measurement that folows the spoken word,time,pushing away while also reaching inside to a more deeply seated core of connectivity as humans.The flesh is made real. Dettmer's book are treated as flesh,as he has made clear.The space they occupy becomes several things at once.

Brian Dettmer's creations propose numerous implications. Influences can be traced to Tristan Zara and his desire to construct poetry from random scraps in a hat,Kurt Schwitters and his Merzbau being a life-sized ambition on related turning-outs of thought made physical,to Brion Gysin and his wish for words to follow the same needs and understandings as abstracted strokes of paint. Tom Phillip's 1970 Humument is yet another obvious influence. The painter Philip Guston also ventured in the arena with his poem-pictures. Once this process is opened, the thoughts and possibilites blur on and on in a way that echoes the theme itself. Operating contemporary poets such as Kenny Goldsmith,founding editor Ubuweb,trained as a sculptor once recreated Abbie Hoffman's book, "Steal this Book" on such a scale- and out of metal- so that doing what it requested brought the thing as an object to the forefront. Goldsmith,like Dettmer, still sculpts words and the two both still continue to hatch at a desire that resides at a center of human connectivity. The relevance of all of this is fascinating on modern terms,as is made obvious in the explorations of the Flarf poets and their deliberate mashing of language through the use of the internet and search engines random generating ability.

Dettmer's books can be called poem-objects, entering a field of work explored by visual poet,and meeting at crossroads with many other schools of thought. His significance is stamped endelibly due to the revealing of that same will and awareness executed by those before him. It shows the struggle and will,the need to do what must be done. His is a remarkable and rare mindset,one that also happens to have a keen aesthetic sensibility. His thoughts filtered through found-objects becomes an undeniable new visual poem..

His work at Saltworks presently displays explorations in the process of recording his phases. The Chronical,Chronic,Con pieces (shown in process on film) rely on releasing imagery as much as text,while Fate Far Fast Fall Final is almost entirely a becoming of words into object. Much of the fascination slips across the surface of these pieces of art. They are objects of art and can be approached with that simple appreciation. Soft Standards, a piece that is a grafted fanned out network of book spines,is a creation that almost seems to breath. It appears to want to get up and move across the room. It is a beautiful thing to simply look at,as well as consider in all of its implications.


aaagh! i dont know why i wrote this, guys..i just had to. it's too much damn fun. the implications of this kind of thing have always fascinated me. I really feel its coming to a weird breaking point,the need for the acceptance of bridges non-lexical ways of striking out,of communicating...stripping us peeps down to barebones and realities of realities..our internal images at one blammo moment in all of our collective connected faces..breeeeathe...uuuuuh.

heck i dunno. go see this show! you tell me.

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