HEROIC SOCIAL WORKER
(Dirty Hands, Clean Money)
An intervention by David Dixon
June 27 - Extended through October 11, 2014
From left: 'The Shack', 'Dirty Hands, Clean Money', 'Wailing Wall', 'Muddy Waters'
'Muddy Waters' and 'Wailing Wall'
'Dirty Hands, Clean Money' and 'The Shack'
'Dirty Hands, Clean Money'
paint, paper, wood, plexiglass, plaster, pigment
'Dirty Hands, Clean Money' (verso) and 'The Shack'
plaster, pigment, paint, laminated photo mounted on sintra
'Heroic Social Worker' (2010)
paint on canvas
paint on canvas with collage, wood
(text in reverse: "heroic social worker")
Detail, 'Muddy Waters'
Detail, 'Dirty Hands, Clean Money'
Detail, 'Wailing Wall'
masonite, paint, nails
Two works on paper: 'Dirty Hands, Clean Money'
Opening night, June 27, 2014
John Anderson, David Dixon, Douglas Ross and Jodie Manasevit.
Who can claim the mantle, Heroic Social Worker, and does aesthetic labor play a role? Can surface work to produce social good? Can Narcissus penetrate surface with work? How pure to be good, how selfless?
For the last show of its first season, Cathouse FUNeral is given over to its founder, David Dixon, who installs several large-scale works that augment and develop the Cathouse’s unique exhibition method: maintaining elements from earlier shows in present ones.
“Heroic Social Worker” creates a contiguous built and excavated environment of surface: 'Wailing Wall', an ersatz, wall-sized edifice of masonite, with both painted and real cracks, references American Abstract Expressionism and the Western Wall in Jerusalem. For Dixon, the Wailing Wall is a symbol of separation, shifting attention from what is behind and unseen to the social space in front. 'The Shack', a fresco that invites the viewer into Cathouse FUNeral’s prototype – a space for art and culture built by Dixon in Ithaca, NY now called station923 – represented here by a photograph of one of its pastel colored corners, reproduced, mirrored and flattened into a wall-sized plaster mural. 'Muddy Waters', a barely legible text, “heroic social worker”, is collaged vertically and in reverse with cardboard stencil, submerged under high-gloss, murky-brown paint as if a reflection of the viewer, Narcissus-like, staring into a pool of muddy water.
These three pieces plus others, which emphasize abstraction, form and color as symbol and result of artistic labor, in a space charged with remnants of past exhibition design, can be entered and enjoyed if not penetrated and known.
David Dixon is an artist and filmmaker who has shown, screened or performed at MoMA, Sculpture Center, Galapagos, Antenna, Postmasters, The Kitchen, Show Room, Anthology Film Archive. In 2012 his film 'David Dixon is dead.' won Best Feature Film at the Queens World Film Festival. He lives and works in Brooklyn.
For more of David's work click here: daviddixon.net