Bernard Jacobson Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of new works by the renowned Los Angeles-based artist Joe Goode. Born in 1937, in Oklahoma, Goode rose to prominence in the West Coast art scene of the early 1960s having made the voyage west with his childhood friend Ed Ruscha the previous decade and studied under Robert Irwin and Emerson Woelffer at the Chouinard Art Institute, in Los Angeles.
In common with West Coast contemporaries, such as Larry Bell, Goode’s work contains what David Hickey has characterized as a ‘prioritization of the visible’. In Goode’s oeuvre this focus seems underpinned by a broadly materialist view of the natural elements and is expressed through a systematic examination of the nature of the picture plane as a surface for painted illusion. Be it in his ‘Torn Cloud’ paintings of the 1970s or his ‘Pollution and Sunspot’ series of the 1990s, Goode’s work calls into question the perceptual viewpoint of the spectator and the nature of abstraction.
In his latest works, Joe Goode has incorporated the celebrated Parisian street scenes of Eugene Atget. Working in the late 19th and early 20th century, Atget set out to photograph the deserted corners and back alleys of the rapidly expanding French capital, producing images of great historical and artistic significance. In Goode’s work these black and white photographs are combined in multiple combinations to form a ground upon which the artist has painted in gold; at times seeming to blast through the underlying image, at times to meld into it. Goode’s additions are related to the underlying imagery only through broadly abstract values, and as such serve to disrupt the autonomy of the underlying image. The use of gold further complicates the viewers’ experience, suggesting some form of alchemic relation to the chemical aspects of the photographic process and thus calling into question the underlying fabric of the original imagery. As such, Atget’s urban documentation is transformed by Goode into a sophisticated essay into the nature of picture making; one which calls into question the very autonomy and significance of imagery which Atget and his contemporary photographic pioneers in part helped to construct.
This will be Goode’s first solo show of new works in London for almost 40 years. The artist will be present for the opening.