Tuesday, September 25, 2007

jef bourgeau @ oakland gallery

More on the artist here

Silent Woman, 1991

F/U, 2007, video collaboration with dick goody, ann gordon

Chest (Donald Judd), 1996

Blue House on the Moon, 1997

Andres Serrano, Georg Baselitz, Andy Warhol, and Gerhard Richter, 1997

It was great to see all of bourgeau's artist personalities in one room! I have to say that each name really matched up to the style of the work yet still had Bourgeau's underlying voice and matched formats. I believe that all the foolery in the end was well worth it for this installation room...even how upset or annoyed some people might have been when they made that trip out to MONA to see not a visiting artist but Bourgeau's work! Seeing the breadth of his works together in one show (isn't it great to see a solo show in detroit...we don't have enough of them!) made it more interesting to trace the path of his works' history, ideas and progression. Bourgeau's works definitely fall into a category of artwork about artwork and establishing a commentary between artist (jef) and predecessors. The work also lends well in a museum-like setting and the "museum" becomes the unspoken third person in the works. I am a little short for words tonight...but this show is worth checking out. Bourgeau has stayed very active in the community and continually encourages and gives opportunity to artists in this city. He has a very distinct voice and always stays true to his intent despite the consequences.

Joy Hakanson Colby says it best (in the catalog well worth it):
"Maybe it's just the passing of time, but I'm evaluating people who have touched my life over the years. I must say that Jef Bourgeau has made a dent in my thinking... I think his ideas and philosophy need time to reach people, to seep through the armor that walls off our brains. I've been in turn annoyed, angry, dazzled, amused nonplussed, outraged, intimidated, bewildered and a host of other emotions that his work walls up."
When I asked jef where he will go after all of this and he said that it must be stressed that this shouldn't be considered just a regular end-of-the-line retrospective but a mid-career retrospective: there is still a lot more to come and I can't wait to see where he goes from here!

A Day in the Life, 1993

A History of Black People (After Basquiat) ,1984

Color of Sky, 1991

MCA Paint, 1998

Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, 1968

Paradise Lost, 1994

Blue Judith, 1998

An Object Like a Painting, 1998

An Object Like a Painting, 1995

Documenta USA

Monsier d'Hotel (after Dubuffet), 1995

After Renoir, 1993

American Beauty (Sleeping), 1997


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Excellent show and presentation Jef!

7:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd read about a bad boy but couldn't find one here. The work was so dry I cracked my lips.

11:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

wish i could have been there to see it jef. fascinating.

8:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the more i learn about him the more i really love jef. i'm sad i left without ever really meeting him.

2:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is a great show but you have to be there, in the building and rooms, to absorb it. Jef mines, archeologist-like, histories of various art objects, movements, moments, in unusual, and determined, ways. He looks at art, the market, and ways one sometimes, perhaps always (?), overwhelms the other. I look at the whole exhibition as a love letter to the potential of art made by an artist perched right between his heart and his head. Lynn

3:27 PM  
Blogger GetKat said...

jef's show was incredible, a veritable history of art in detroit. concurrently, though he also curated Intelligent Design at MONA, see his website for artists. a major achievement, bringing together artists both from detroit and chicago as well as new york, italy, etc. etc. pictures of the exhibition would be great!

2:05 AM  

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