They’re Quiet Now (2021)

They’re Quiet Now (2021) is a collection of 4 oil paintings that examines the performance of masculinity through imagery based on 3D computer-rendered scenes. Within the language of sexualized kitsch, ranging from tacky 90s superhero camp to John Galliano era Dior advertisements, I depict an illusion of transparency as homoerotic digital figures take on a gelatinous, glass-like appearance. Through taking stock of the objectively bland qualities of the hypermasculine forms, I investigate what is considered a perfect body, what it means to have a body, and what it means to be perceived as a body. In this line of interrogation, I contemplate how perfection impacts sexual desire.

Informed by this visual lexicon, I construct various scenarios that codify highly eroticized states of castration anxiety through accumulative paint applications, varying from controlled to chaotic. Rooted in weaponized ambiguity, I hide these figures in plain sight to question the role of consumption and taste through a conflict of optical understanding. What is seen? What is lost in translation?

As the imagery exists in a hallucination, the work represents a battle between idealization and inescapable reality. By painting these scenes, instead of merely 3D rendering them, I embrace the romantics of failure. The human hand can never live up to the perfection of a computer. But what does it mean to try? The paintings, therefore, utilize the overperformance of painting to translate digital overconsumption through the limitations of the human condition.

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