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Andrew Birk Main Profile Image

Andrew Birk

Mexico City, Mexico

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Painting • Born in Portland, Oregon, USA • Studied at University of Oregon
 3

INSTALLATION PAINTING PERFORMANCE

It is an experience. Its not just the food; its the plates, the walls, the lighting, its the smells, the noises, the street outside, the restaurant sign hanging off the building, its the people eating and talking around you, its how you feel afterwards, belly full, sitting on the curb enjoying a cigarette. Look for it and you will see it blowing through your garden, making you plug your ears and crinkle your nose. At its highest form there is no...

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It is an experience. Its not just the food; its the plates, the walls, the lighting, its the smells, the noises, the street outside, the restaurant sign hanging off the building, its the people eating and talking around you, its how you feel afterwards, belly full, sitting on the curb enjoying a cigarette. Look for it and you will see it blowing through your garden, making you plug your ears and crinkle your nose. At its highest form there is no good or bad, just is. It surrounds us, every second of every day. 

Painting was my first probe into this world. Examining painting, inside and outside of the frame, is what exposed me to the limits and possibilities of art. The edge of one thing is the door to another thing. Im looking for paintings in places that paintings (proper) shouldnt be, or arent. But paintings are everywhere, a shadow of a cloud can be a painting, compositions are everywhere. Every object you step around can be a sculpture, every environment can be an installation. Art exists in all places that a human exists. 

My recent work is a limited attempt to apply this framework, which will admittedly take my entire life, if that, to understand. I am learning. I dont mind failure because Im not sure what that is. I dont mind success because Im not sure what that is, either. I want to see what happens. 

The way tacos de canasta posters are wheat-pasted to a concrete pillar that sustains the segundo piso outside of the hospital. The build-up of dirt and exhaust that obscures visual information. Objects flung to the side of the road weathering in the sun. Metal wires and rivets and nails tied to things or sticking out of things rusting. The stickers on your car. The hats on your head. The way the sound of a diesel engine mixes with pawn-shop Cumbia. Hammers hitting. A helicopter flies over you. Right now is a piece. 

If I am feeling heart-broken I focus on details that reinforce that. If I am in love I focus on details that reinforce that. Everything in-between.A dog pulling the leash from smell to smell. I focus on my experience, its just mine, and its a bottomless well that Ill always be able to draw from. 

Andrew Birk


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