logomark 4-22 SM

Rema Hort Mann Foundation

Antone Konst

Looking at anything, if we consider it Art, allows us to tune our seeing…a painting is an
instrument, a kind of calibrator for thought and perception. We don’t expect it to be meaningful immediately like everything else (an iPhone means 1,000 things quickly), we expect a formal experience to confuse our consideration of content, usually, which is what allows it to be ‘more’ or ‘other’ than it ‘is’.
In building this kind of instrument, I often rely on culturally clichéd tropes very personal to me, like a glyphic tablet, the sun, ferns, a rooster. A ubiquitous motif of the french, yankees, country folk, lovers of kitch, etc.; a Rooster is also infinite.
Growing up on a farm I’ve observed poultry closely and had relationships with them, seen our roosters peck and rape hens, forage for ticks, run around headless.
I start with a linguistic sign of [rooster, rogue text, moons, whatever] as my drawing, and my knowledge that it exceeds knowing as my color, material, process, texture, scale. Then I rub the two together like sticks, looking for friction.
The problem with cliché is that it’s meaning is powerless. Another problem is that meaning, in relation to objects, is not singular – it’s infinite and malleable. In that way, clichés exclude those perspectives (non-dominant) which
find different meanings than the prescribed one.
I’ve always had a distrust of something that it supposed to ‘mean something’. It diminishes the agency of the producer and the consumer.
In my practice, I take that supposition of meaning in figurative form and empty it, or,
from another perspective, overload it with aesthetic and material significance.
It’s not aggressive, it’s generous. I sincerely believe in the Warholian principle that if something is formal enough, if it has no clear
symbolic value anymore, it suddenly can become a new sight for meaningful signification, an instrument anyone can play and which, though specifically tuned, can express
powerfully and with nuance.
An instrument like that can be a tool for perceptual agency. That’s what I try to make.
 
 
Looking at anything, if we consider it Art, allows us to tune our seeing…a painting is an
instrument, a kind of calibrator for thought and perception. We don’t expect it to be meaningful immediately like everything else (an iPhone means 1,000 things quickly), we expect a formal experience to confuse our consideration of content, usually, which is what allows it to be ‘more’ or ‘other’ than it ‘is’.
In building this kind of instrument, I often rely on culturally clichéd tropes very personal to me, like a glyphic tablet, the sun, ferns, a rooster. A ubiquitous motif of the french, yankees, country folk, lovers of kitch, etc.; a Rooster is also infinite.
Growing up on a farm I’ve observed poultry closely and had relationships with them, seen our roosters peck and rape hens, forage for ticks, run around headless.
I start with a linguistic sign of [rooster, rogue text, moons, whatever] as my drawing, and my knowledge that it exceeds knowing as my color, material, process, texture, scale. Then I rub the two together like sticks, looking for friction.
The problem with cliché is that it’s meaning is powerless. Another problem is that meaning, in relation to objects, is not singular – it’s infinite and malleable. In that way, clichés exclude those perspectives (non-dominant) which
find different meanings than the prescribed one.
I’ve always had a distrust of something that it supposed to ‘mean something’. It diminishes the agency of the producer and the consumer.
In my practice, I take that supposition of meaning in figurative form and empty it, or,
from another perspective, overload it with aesthetic and material significance.
It’s not aggressive, it’s generous. I sincerely believe in the Warholian principle that if something is formal enough, if it has no clear
symbolic value anymore, it suddenly can become a new sight for meaningful signification, an instrument anyone can play and which, though specifically tuned, can express
powerfully and with nuance.
An instrument like that can be a tool for perceptual agency. That’s what I try to make.