FLAME AS FLAG
January 10 - February 28, 2015
I like to make things that look like they are paintings: love songs for assholes.
Paul Loya Gallery is pleased to enter the new year with Flame as Flag, a solo exhibition of new work from Dallas-based artist William Binnie. The exhibition will open on Saturday, January 10, 2015 and will run through March 7th, 2015, with an opening reception on January 10 from 6pm until 9pm.
Paint, bleach, meat, paper…. William Binnie takes in the history of America, and the narrative of Western art, refracted through a punk sensibility that is at once critical and chaotic. Flame as Flag consists entirely of “paintings” made with household bleach on stretched canvases of blue denim, completed between Binnie’s residency at the Rauschenberg Foundation in summer 2014 and the following three months in São Paulo. Like his earlier delicate renderings of spider webs with walnut ink on translucent vellum, Binnie’s bleach paintings marry substance and subject matter, locating the social embedded in his chosen materials. The bleach series depicts various sites of middle-class prerogatives engulfed in flames. Cars, homes, churches, factories—the canvases viscerally glow with the blanching of brushwork, resembling photo negatives. A punk ethos of destruction as construction permeates the work.
His 2012 series of meat paintings, lavish still-lifes of Texas-style barbeque tableaux and detailed renderings of cuts of raw beef, draw a through line from the rich Dutch still-life tradition of the 17th century, straight through to contemporary forms of late-capitalist excess and posturing—the ease with which Binnie conflates Good ol’ Boy cronyism and old-world Oligarchism speak to the tension between Western art history’s roots in celebration of private property, and modernist ideals about the power of art to change the way we live. Binnie’s layering of themes into a material history of possession and unseen labor take up the fraught visual juxtapositions of John Berger’s seminal book Ways of Seeing and bind them into single images that hover on the edge of objecthood.
William Binnie (Dallas, b.1985) earned his BA from Pitzer College in 2008 and an MFA from SMU Meadows School of the Arts in 2014. Solo exhibitions include Terra Incognita at The Public Trust (Dallas), Webs at Maloney Fine Art (Los Angeles), and Drawing, Painting at Greg Kucera Gallery (Seattle). Group exhibitions include The Dallas Collective: Every Person is a Special Kind of Artist, with Baggage at the Texas Biennial in Marfa, TX and Hit the Lights at Paul Loya Gallery. Binnie was most recently selected as an artist-in-residence at the Rauschenberg Foundation in Captiva, FL. He currently lives and works in Dallas.