Decay of stability & Remark #3 and #4
Jonathan Paepens shows a two series of framed works at Salon Pièdestal. The first series is called Decay of Stability showing several watercolors of foot fungus. The second series is called Remarks.
Foot fungus is annoying, uncomfortable and dirty. It reminds one of something unhygienic and dirty. So why should such a thing be glorified by a watercolor? Not that my watercolors are particularly delightful, but I paint them out of a memory of what they are. Man’s eternal failure at the possible victory of man over nature. We try endlessly to banish the natural from our immediate living environment. All that remains in our homes and lives are the mimetic memories of what was natural. Plants are the last remnants of our natural habitat, although after years of cultivation, they are not so natural either. Rather, they are as synthetically created as the landscape painting overlooking some mountain somewhere in Greece that brightens up so many living rooms. Now, this is certainly not a plea for the reintegration of man and nature. It’s about the beauty of memory. A mimetic memory of nature. That is also what the small works that I show here are about. It shows something that needs to be pushed into the background, and thus results only in the memory of its image. The memory of the fungus that has to go as far away as possible, just like all the other natural things in our living and working world.
Anything that is impenetrable as an idea can only be asked as a question. The series “Remarks” is about these notes that have to fill in the unanswered questions as placeholders. For how long is very unclear. For both the questioner and the viewer, they remain open. The questions remain unanswered and also answers to nothing. They are empty, just like the thoughts on the questions are empty and unanswered.