Cheryl Donegan, Ryan Fenchel, Wade Guyton, Tom Meacham

03.27.11 – 05.14.11

“It is not only an art that manifests itself through weak images—images with weak visibility, images that are necessarily overlooked when they function as components of strong images with a high level of visibility, such as images of classical art or mass culture.” – Boris Groys

For Cheryl Donegan, Wade Guyton and Tom Meacham, three of the artists featured in Kabinett 6, “weak” images, that is, subjects derived largely from digital sources — high-speed and high-connectivity technology — are wedded to low visibility imagery from personal computing and the internet to form the basis of individual and related projects. In their work, they recognize how the frantic pace of innovation in digital and communication technologies compresses our sense of time; rather than contemplated, our images are instantly ripped, posted and linked.

Wade Guyton produces “monochromes” from simple image files that are printed on canvas with a ink-jet printer. The technology is deliberately stressed by commanding the computer to print a relatively small file over a large canvas area and by pulling at the material as it feeds through the printer, forcing breaks and stutters in the scan lines. Gaps and errors disrupt smooth function — the printer skips and drops the images as one would scratch a record on a turntable. In his work, Guyton understands how those digital files, clearly derived from “weak” sources, can be relocated through aggressively directed material and process.

The imagery in Cheryl Donegan‘s paintings comes directly from millions of Jpegs posted daily on the internet. The flotsam and jetsam on eBay and Craigslist, uploaded catalog inventory, and all the blog pages that no one has time to look at. The frantic pace of clicking from screen to screen inspires compositions in her paintings that overlap, obscure, hint and distract. Her sense of space, building off the fracturing of Cubism, follows the logic of junkspace: the endlessly additive, thin, permanently unrealized space of cities littered with cranes, Grand Opening banners and abandoned storefronts.

In Tom Meacham‘s work, the Untitled paintings and the Fuzagi paintings both announce a state of uncertainty: a title, and a legitimate identity. This negative approach, this self-erasure, is nonetheless broadcast in the strongest way possible: the garish colors of the grid painting, indeterminately selected by feeding randomly generated numbers into a computer program, are a return to  zero, semiotics, an imposter, and simultaneously an argument for the spectacle in painting. And in spite of its surrealist legacy, the painting that announces THIS IS NOT A FUGAZI T-SHIRT cancels out not only its identity as a painting, but also ideas of economy and authorship.

Each of these artists share the idea of “weakness.” Erasure, lack of closure and misuse puts them firmly within the realm of what Boris Groys terms the “ultra-modern” — a fast moving society with little time to resolve or complete images, only to keep clicking; discarding one project for the next; oscillating between the poles of outlandish luxury and debased realism. They displace the weak image within the technology of the digital and announce the latest move in a paradox between so much and too little.

In Ryan Fenchel‘s recent work, metonymy drives the discourse. Objects, images and ideas link up with one another to move meaning outside and beyond any literal association that might limit the reading. Quoting Steve Reinke in a statement about Ryan Fenchel’s work, he says “things don’t stand in for other things, abstract concepts are not allegorized as concrete things or characters. Instead, there are potentially endless chains of associations, things are substituted for other things more or less like them. Things rub against one another, are arranged — sometimes in regulated geometric patterns, sometimes like stars in a constellation — and there is always something contingent in these arrangements: components could be switched or substituted without the autonomy of the Fenchel world being compromised.” Like the other artists in Kabinett 6, the accumulation and relocation of cultural material is the primary objective in these humble but mysterious works.

  • Kabinett 6; Cheryl Donegan, Tom Meacham, Wade Guyton, Ryan Fenchel

    installation view

  • The Unessentials (2011)

    acrylic and spray paint on canvas, 36 × 24 inches

  • Untitled (2010)

    Epson UltraChrome inkjet on linen, 36 × 26 inches

    collection of the artist

  • Tom Meacham

    Kabinett 6; Cheryl Donegan, Tom Meacham, Wade Guyton, Ryan Fenchel

    installation view

  • Tom Meacham

    Untitled (green), Untitled (Fugazi) (2011)

    inkjet on canvas, 57 × 36 inches

  • Tom Meacham

    Untitled (2008)

    spray paint on canvas, 24 × 18 inches

  • Kabinett 6

    installation view

  • Vessels (2011)

    oil, objects, wood, fabric, paint,

  • Grips (2011)

    pastel and collage on paper in frame, 20 × 23 inches

  • Next Pass (speculative) (2011)

    wood, clay, pastel, paint, stain, polyurethane, glue, 16 × 20 inches

  • Tom Meacham

    The Greater Good (2007)

    installation view, Oliver Kamm Gallery, New York

  • Tom Meacham

    Untitled (2007)

    57 x 88 inches, installation view, Oliver Kamm Gallery, New York

  • Partial Sayings (2011)

    acrylic and spray paint on canvas, 36 × 24 inches

  • Mislocate (2011)

    acrylic and spray paint on canvas, 36 × 24 inches

  • Kawakubo (2011)

    acrylic and spray paint on canvas, 36 × 24 inches

  • Artificial Spirit (2010)

    spray paint on canvas

    36 x 24 inches

  • Ten Words (2011)

    oil, clay, wood, wax, nature, 37 × 20 inches

  • Next Pass (nowish) (2011)

    wood, carpet, tempera, pastel, clay, paint, 16 × 22 inches

Current

Sean Sullivan

Sunset, Saudade Station

02.19.17 – 03.26.17

offspace

Paul Erschen

Cloven

02.19.17 – 02.25.17

Archive

Peggy Casey

Gun Shadows

01.08.17 – 02.11.17

Matt Phillips

Yard Sale

10.30.16 – 12.17.16

offspace

Steve Reber

copy, fax… cut and paste

10.30.16 – 12.17.16

offspace

Allison Wade

Know Better

08.28.16 – 10.15.16

Alain Biltereyst

Not Just Because

08.28.16 – 10.15.16

Christine Tarkowski

Chthonic Void

04.03.16 – 05.14.16

Mike Andrews

The Friends and Family Plan

02.21.16 – 03.26.16

offspace

Conrad Bakker

Untitled Project: Still Life / Style Leaf

02.21.16 – 03.26.16

offspace

Turquoise Sunset

01.10.16 – 02.13.16

Scott Wolniak

To Break is to Build

01.10.16 – 02.13.16

offspace

Amy Yoes

Structurals and Sightlines

11.01.15 – 12.12.15

Christopher Michlig

To Everyone

11.01.15 – 12.12.15

Bradley Biancardi, Austin Eddy, Annie Hémond Hotte, Shara Hughes and Tracy Thomason

08.30.15 – 10.17.15

offspace

Steven Husby

myotherisanother

04.26.15 – 06.13.15

Jessie Mott

What Creature Deserves Such Devotion

04.26.15 – 06.13.15

Cody Tumblin

Tell Tale

03.15.15 – 04.18.15

offspace

Angharad Davies

You Know That As Radiant

03.15.15 – 04.18.15

Leslie Baum + Allison Wade

01.31.15 – 03.07.15

Katy Cowan + Michael Milano

work : work

12.14.14 – 01.25.15

offspace

Monika Bartholomé

Night Walk

10.26.14 – 12.06.14

Aron Gent

Pure Pictures, Perfect Prints

10.26.14 – 12.06.14

offspace

Aaron Carpenter + Philip von Zweck

Cartoons + C.A.B.S.

09.07.14 – 10.18.14

Franziska Holstein

Works on Paper

09.07.14 – 10.18.14

Seth Hunter

held/crushed

07.20.14 – 07.20.14

Mistakes Have Hidden Intention

05.25.14 – 06.28.14

Gerd Borkelmann

Different Every Day

03.09.14 – 04.12.14

offspace

Mike Rea

Exile on Main Street

03.09.14 – 04.12.14

offspace

Felix Malnig

Fringe Area

01.26.14 – 03.01.14

Craig Yu

Phantom Limb

01.26.14 – 03.01.14

Peter Fagundo

Model Questions for the Sun, the See and Other Things…

12.15.13 – 01.18.14

offspace

Sofia Leiby

The Drama of Leisure

12.15.13 – 01.18.14

Nathaniel Robinson

The Sensible Range

10.20.13 – 12.07.13

offspace

Alain Biltereyst

09.08.13 – 10.12.13

Sterling Lawrence

If I Plucked You from the Sea

09.08.13 – 10.12.13

Matt Rich

Razors & Vapors

04.28.13 – 06.08.13

offspace

Vincent Hawkins

Flying Suit

03.17.13 – 04.20.13

Nancy Ford

Land Loping

03.17.13 – 04.20.13

Rainer Spangl

UUUUU

02.03.13 – 03.09.13

offspace

Shit is Real

new editions by Chicago artists

02.03.13 – 03.09.13

offspace

Nick Ostoff

Tracing

12.16.12 – 01.26.13

Allison Wade

The Rest of the More

12.16.12 – 01.26.13

offspace

Julia Hechtman

10.14.12 – 12.08.12

Christopher Michlig

10.14.12 – 12.08.12

offspace

Michael Pfisterer

08.26.12 – 10.06.12

Gary Stephan

08.26.12 – 10.06.12

06.10.12 – 07.21.12

Jin Lee

04.22.12 – 06.02.12

offspace

Dorothee Joachim + Richard Roth

04.22.12 – 06.02.12

I Surrender

03.11.12 – 04.14.12

offspace

Alexander Valentine

01.29.12 – 03.03.12

Joshua Abelow

Songs from a Room

01.29.12 – 03.03.12

Mark Booth

The Sea is Represented by an Irregular Shape

12.11.11 – 01.21.12

offspace

Scott Fortino

Unfurl

12.11.11 – 01.21.12

offspace

Andreas Karl Schulze

10.16.11 – 12.03.11

Evidence of the Material World

10.16.11 – 12.03.11

offspace

Sound & Vision

08.28.11 – 10.08.11

Volker Saul

Rough Cuts

08.28.11 – 10.08.11

Leslie Baum

The eyes have it or how to win a staring contest with a monster

05.22.11 – 07.02.11

offspace

Works on Paper

05.22.11 – 07.02.11

offspace

MultipleMix

01.30.11 – 03.19.11

Andreas Fischer + Melissa Pokorny

Kabinett 5

01.30.11 – 03.19.11

Britta Bogers, Mark Holmes, Jered Sprecher

Kabinett 4

12.05.10 – 01.22.11

Dana DeGiulio, Marie T Hermann, Anders Ruhwald

Kabinett 3

10.24.10 – 11.27.10

Richard Rezac + Gary Stephan

Kabinett 1 + 2

08.29.10 – 10.16.10

Paul Cowan + Matt Stolle

Causality without Cause

07.18.10 – 08.15.10

offspace

Wheatstone Stereoscope

07.18.10 – 08.15.10

Skies in Between

05.23.10 – 07.08.10

offspace

Berlin Drawings

05.23.10 – 07.08.10

offspace

Visceral Geometries

04.11.10 – 05.18.10

Nathaniel Robinson

de facto

04.11.10 – 05.18.10

Peter Otto

The Lodger

03.07.10 – 04.09.10

offspace

Heiner Blumenthal

A Hand-off Between

01.31.10 – 03.01.10

Rodney Carswell

hither and yon (little prisons)

01.31.10 – 03.01.10

Home Wreckage

Subversive Musings on Domestic Ideals

12.06.09 – 01.24.10

offspace

Time, Trauma, Drama and Rhyme

12.06.09 – 01.24.10

Dagmar Varady

Redden

10.18.09 – 12.01.09