painting" at 303 gallery by Jeanne Siegel The title refers to a 40-page collage poem
(in progress) that offers another way of
looking at Jackson Pollock. It challenges
misunderstandings of his personality,
pathology and interpretations of his work.
Bloodgood draws on earlier writers and
poets, Melville, for example, for words and
ideas to piece together. At the same time,
the title refers to Pollock's late black
enamel paintings as a source of
exploration. Bloodgood bends the now-
persuasive tradition of combining art and
language. Whereas both Julian Schnabel and
Suzanne McClelland continue to incorporate
text into their paintings, Bloodgood has
separated the elements into two
experiences, giving the collaged poems more
scope and meaning. "I am contrasting the
poetic and the painterly but only in order
to collapse them both into another form--
the essay," says Bloodgood.
The new paintings are rougher, tougher,
cooler than his previous ones. He wants to
capture the American rawness (there's some
of Kline's force here too), even echoing
something of Pollock's early Gothicness.
But there are many differences. Bloodgood
finds his own vocabulary of markmaking--
it's linear and it's not continuous, often
split or fragmented. Marks are kept away
from the edges, not allowing for the sense
of a unified whole found in Pollock's
paintings. Spaces are wide open and
undulating. Lastly, the direct reference to
figuration in Pollock's black enamels is
absent. The painting, A Walk and a Foreign
Portrait, drawn from Pollock, becomes a
kind of Bloodgoodian pictorial collage.
The artist defiantly professes his love of
the past. His last show took off from
Manet. In the `80s, appropriation of style
was replaced by appropriation of content.
Bloodgood retrieves style, which privileges
the mentorial influence. The justification
of influence lies not only in who the
artist chooses as his mentor but what he
does with it, and Bloodgood does a lot.
Apr. 27 - May 18, 1996