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At Ronald Feldman Fine Arts





October 15 – November 12

Testing the Limits

Madeline Gins: You've said "testing the limits of any one medium is a good way of going about testing the limits of the universe." Testing, or forcing the limits, I guess. How much of what" in question might any given painting be forced to contain? A critical testing comes with the pushing of each painting to its limit. How much can a painting hold before it will hold no more? Or does a work of art not need to hold very much at all as it is only a holding area? The more materiality put into the work, the less room for what else it could be up to?


Arakawa: Painting is only an exercise, never more than that. Through the years, I've used it always in this way – as a measuring device. Calibrations for guiding the critical observing I wish to bring about can be conveniently held in place on this surface. The perceptual background – and this is mostly who a person as viewer is – can be reworked and reconsidered by means of these markings. The key is to position these so that they enable "out of the blue" to wander through itself for a coming to terms with what's going on. Background, gap, blank, "out of the blue" and space, too name non-specific active states of perceiving. What I, and, for that matter, what all painters, specify on the canvas are the edges of a perceptual background. The perceptual background is what makes up space or is that out of which space forms. In the new works, I have divided up the canvases by using only those edges that can make this apparent. I flatten what is the view to demonstrate how it is perceiving that gives volume to space. The viewer enters the depiction as part of it. The viewer's stepping onto and into the work brings an end to viewing as a passive reviewing of actions once taken by an artist – Pollock's work is the extreme example of this – and initiates instead of an enjoining of viewing as the process under observation. For this to take place, exact limits must be determined and set.


The public is invited to an opening reception for the artist on Saturday, October 15 from 5 to 7 p.m. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 10:00 to 6:00, Mondays by appointment. For more information and photographs, please contact Susan Yung at (212)226-3232.

(quoted from "Official website")

ARAKAWA + GINS Tokyo Office