February 7, 2008

Aaron Bagley: Experimental guy

In The Stranger, Jen Graves profiles her friend, artist Aaron Bagley. "Given that he's everywhere, you'd think it would be possible to synthesize his style, to describe in a few words what to expect from a show of his. But Bagley, who graduated from Cornish in 2004, isn't narrowing down his interests and honing his style the way many art-school grads feel they should in order to get galleries and attention. He's not shaping a career. He's too busy shaping his constant creative impulses into drawings, paintings, performances, and projects....Bagley says he's worried. He's worried he won't ever settle down into a recognizable commodity. He's worried that giving away his art for free, even only in the form of printed postcards—one of my favorites depicts Kate Moss with a watercolor 'fro, rising out of an upturned Rauschenberg-style stained couch—makes it seem worthless. 'I'm worried I'm not Tom Friedman–clever, Paul McCarthy–shocking,' he says....This mood does not, however, shut down the Bagley operation. The to-do list that hangs over the desk in his apartment says, 'Homeless signs, More abstract paintings, More pants.' He is starting a project that will include homeless signs. He plans to buy them from homeless people. And do what with them? 'I only have a rough outline of what I want to do,' he says. A week later, he's bought his first sign, for four dollars, from a woman who rides his bus. He's considering what's next." Read more.

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