Studio10 is pleased to announce Scissors, Paper, Glue and Books I Can’t Cut Up, an exhibition of new work by the Brooklyn-based artist Tim Spelios.
Spelios’s original source materials become the means to mine obscure connections and create irrational associations through juxtapositions of images and objects. The obsolete materials he collects include flyers, books, magazines, trade catalogs and manuals which are often found at flea markets, second hand book shops or on the street. Spelios has a particular wonderment in the printed matter with the covers torn, important pages removed or defaced.
Wandering the city is integral to Spelios’s process as is working late at night, a time he finds conducive to getting lost in the photographic fragments of his experience. Much of his time is spent removing and obscuring the content of the source material in a palimpsest. He says, “when you’re lifting samples from well-known pop music, you don’t want recognition of the original tune getting in the way of creating something new.” Spelios works quickly and on multiple projects simultaneously. He feels that the speed and multiplicity of his method prevents the process from getting too comfortable, since the images are quickly used. He says, “fluctuation and unevenness are part of the mix, a sort of disjoint history lesson with hallucinogenic discord.” The glutton of material is cut and disassembled with scissors and razors then rearranged to create new associations. The hand cut photo collages wrestle with the tension between abstraction and identifiable images. Though each work is made entirely by hand, the precise execution belies the painstaking effort.
In some cases, the collage is simply one image placed over another such as in the series “Defaced.” The content and context of the original painted and photographed portraits is obliterated by a single, curvilinear fragment cut from an unrelated source resulting in an irreverent dislocation. In other collages, dozens of fragments are layered, creating an intimate, ambiguous and cacophonous space. Also included in the exhibition is the installation Books I Can’t Cut Up, 2012 which consists of approximately seven wooden sawhorses of different heights with thin tabletops haphazardly placed on the horses. Books that are determined too special to be cut lie opened to random pages on the tabletops for viewers to thumb through.
As chance plays a role in Spelios finding the printed matter, so it continues in creating peculiar relationships between the disparate elements associated in the collage. “It’s a visual stream of consciousness with a pinch of free jazz and blurry eyes… I like things organized so I try to keep my worktable as cluttered and chaotic as possible. Comfort can create problems,” he says. Spelios has exhibited at Exit Art, The Drawing Center, Sculpture Center, Smack Mellon Studios, Long Island University, Pierogi Gallery, and Parkers Box among others. Spelios teaches at Pratt Institute, and taught at The University of Illinois at the Phillips Collection in D.C. Caroline Cox and Tim Spelios, co-founded and ran Flipside Gallery from 1996-2001.
Performances in association with the exhibition:
March 10, 7:30 – 10:00 March 17, 7:30 – 10:00
The band, Mr. Klopp, will play on both nights. The Kloppasonic sound is an unpredictable amalgam of Cajun, Blues, Country, Psychedelic and a little Free Jazz.
Tim Spelios: drums Mark Deffenbaugh: guitar John Sherman: accordion Tony Mamone: bass
Gallery hours: Friday through Monday, 1 – 6 P.M.