Description

Anthony Burnham re-examines the practice of painting with works that allude to the history and condition of the medium through the perspective of other media, such as photography or sculpture. Not Yet Titled makes visible the effects of transfer from one medium to another. First, the artist painted a large canvas with the words “The Thing The Thing The Thing” and photographed it in his studio. Next, he covered the canvas with a coat of white paint, allowing a ghostly image of the inscription to show through, like a pentimento. He then photocopied the photograph and reproduced the copy on the canvas, painting it as if set against the photocopied pages of a book held in place by tape. The resulting work emphasizes the reproduction process and suggests a sculptural object: in addition to the trompe-l’oeil photocopy, the canvas itself is displayed on two blocks of wood, rather than hung on the wall. Burnham’s exacting method serves to reflect on the painted image, on reality withdrawing into its representation, as if ceding its place to its own copy. M.-E. B.