The art world is abuzz
with the sad news that Jason Rhoades has died
. Some wrongly allege
this happened in Portland
. Yes the new non profit I'm working on, Organism, was organizing a soiree with Rhoades
for August 12th in Portland. Organism has a short statement on their site
but the first place we saw anything "written" on it was art.blogging.la. Our thoughts and condolences are with his family and loved ones.
Times has a piece on Rhoades untimely death
and points out a number of very
important things (you will have to register). Rhoades was a West Coast artist
with West Coast sensibilities. His all out assault on puritanical baggage is
just one of his legacies, some of the others being his interest in religion,
utopian ideas, putting a cosmopolitan sensibility over political correctness
and generally making art that wasn't so easily comodified. Where others sought
mostly to please, Rhoades would challenge by riding every fence imaginable.
By all accounts he was very smart and an intense workaholic. He was really looking
forward to the event in Portland and as the LAT mentions, some of the supplies
(lube that approximates human bile, etc) that were to be used here will end up in
a shrine in Joshua Tree. The curator for the event, Majorie Myers (a close personal
friend of the artist) is grieving and as I mentioned before our thoughts are
with his family and loved ones.
Myself, I considered him the most gifted of the recent deluge of artists who
utilize inexpensive materials, a leader. He was one of the three main artists
who I believe defined that recent trend, Sarah Sze and Rachel Harrison being
the other two and he burst on the scene much earlier. Definitely, he's an artist
in the lineage of Rauschenberg and Duchamp... his arrival was prophetic. His
work was also more demanding than other everyday material artists and side-stepped
many of the taming aspects of US museums and gallery conventions, making him
all the more important. Overall, if you hadn't experienced the work you had
to be there... photos are inadequate. Where others would ride one fence Rhoades
would set up 50 more and would have a grand rodeo.
also chime in
It has been "written about" in today's LA Times:
this link might work as well.
This is quite a loss. Reminds me peculiarly of the loss of Felix Gonzalez-Torres which still haunts me. Mid-career artists right around 40 years old, who are workaholics. Hmmmmmm.
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