On view until March 19th, Gio Marconi gallery in Milan is presenting a series of large-scale printed works by American artist Wade Guyton. Displayed in the ground floor area of the gallery, Guyton’s elegant Xs and stripes are an emblematic manifestation of the concept of mechanical reproduction within the art-making process. Guyton’s ‘paintings’ are produced by printing and re-printing the same digital file drawn by the artist in Photoshop on pieces of folded, oversize, pre-primed linen, first on one side, and then on the other. Focusing attention on the medium is definitely characteristic of Guyton’s ‘paintings’. Each one, bearing marks of its somewhat ‘forced’ making process, becomes a visual record of the action of the forty-four inch wide Epson 9600 Ultrachrome inkjet printer used by the artist. The works should not merely be regarded as finished artifacts but as physical traces of a conceptual operation, and as records of the process of their production: the central, vertical line, or seam, shows exactly where the linen was accurately folded to pass through the printer. A reference to 20th century art history and American abstract expressionism is more or less detectable in the exploitation of the medium. Just as the action painters of the mid-20th century relied on the physical act of painting and the chance effects of dripping and spilling paint onto the canvas, Guyton turns to a device to transfer his ‘paintings’ from a computer onto primed linen, letting the medium decide.
Currently living and working in New York City, Wade Guyton was born in 1972 in Hammond, Indiana, and received a B.A. from the University of Tennessee in 1995 and his MFA from Hunter College in 1998. He has recently exhibited with solo shows at Galerie Chantal Crousel in Paris, at Portikus in Frankfurt and at LAXART in Los Angeles. Represented by Friedrich Petzel Gallery in New York, his works are in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York and the Mamco (Musee d’Art Moderne et Contemporain) in Geneva.