Places Placed

Second Street Gallery , Charlottesville, VA

September 7th - October 27th 2012

Brody Reiman and Charlie Castaneda present room-sized installations built entirely from household construction materials such as latex paint, drywall, spackle and raw lumber. Whether piled on floors, spread across walls, or presented as wall-mounted “paintings,” their category-resistant installations suggest both interior and exterior space. Conceptually motivated by an interest in answering the question of what it means to hang a landscape over a mantelpiece, the artists investigate the query from all angles, from the physical make up of the mantel itself, to the historical and social implications of landscape painting.  Starting with kitschy found images of painted scenery, castaneda/reiman are keenly aware of how historic depictions of the American landscape once served political and business needs; their real interest may in fact lie even beyond this initial examination, attempting to turn their store-bought derivatives into something else entirely. 

 Places Placed is about the spaces we inhabit, from the natural world to the built environment. It is also about painting- as decoration, as object, and as symbol- from a sculptor’s perspective. Beginning with a selection of paintings from a personal collection, the paintings go to the studio, where they are somewhat unceremoniously stacked against a wall. Reincarnated here as a singular sculptural object, they are photographed against the unfinished drywall of the studio space. This image, including paintings, wall and floor, becomes a new image, from which elements are excerpted, reproduced, recombined and rephotographed. Every new experience broadcasts itself and reproduces in a seemingly endless combination of situations involving found image, painted reproduction, material copy, physical element and so on. Each space becomes a surrogate for the last, much in the way that any landscape painting, by its very nature, always represents another location.

  -R. Schoenthal, Curator