There's something familiar about Israel Lund's work, a built in memory you can't quite trace, peering into the static of a television or the pixels of a familiar JPEG. While his tongue-in-cheek paintings of Xeroxes of his own paintings of Xeroxes play into the banality of post-post-modern art's pillar of self-referential commodity, they are presented with a certain grandeur and beauty that eventually betrays their blatancy, and simultaneously exposes and negates their intimacy. Process painting in the Meta age produces a result that is both serial and nebulous, critical and trivial, which Lund's work manages to comment on with humor and visceral splendor. Like Warhol's Pop silkscreens in an age where the subject of celebrity finally been nullified, or replaced, instead, by the artist's own ego. Lund has a history of reproducing his own property, whether created, worn or found by him; using zines, books, sculpture and internet portals like Tumblr to distribute his work, gaining him an underground and international notoriety. Rob e rts&T lit on marks his first solo show, which opened Saturday at Roberts & Tilton gallery in Los Angeles, and he is currently exhibiting in group shows at both Galerie Torri in Paris and Middlemarch in Brussels. We caught up with him on opening night in LA for a few questions about his work.
Dazed Digital: What is the process of making these paintings?
Israel Lund: All of my paintings use silk screens to screen print on raw canvas, but unlike the traditional process of screen printing there is no image per se that I am starting with. Instead I used a standard 8.5x11" piece of paper to burn in to the screen, which determines the size of the painting and which I also work within to generate the image. The subsequent image is a result of how much pressure I apply with the squeegee, how much ink I use, and the raw canvas texture. For the paintings in the show at Roberts & Tilton I photographed a small b&w painting with a PDF making app on my phone, blew up the image to 34x44", and burned that image back into a silk screen. That image was then screen printed through a de facto cmyk process (except no black was used), and since the canvas is raw it resists a perfect image to be printed and leads to the variation.
DD: How does technology influence your work?
Israel Lund: I've recently taken to using a few PDF making apps to reproduce images of my paintings (previous iterations I photocopied the paintings), but I wouldn't really consider that "technology". It's actually more quotidian than technological.
DD: What's your opinion of the art scene in LA versus NY?
Israel Lund: It's obviously different between the two, but I don't really have a versus opinion, I enjoy a lot of artist's work that is coming out of both. It's apples and oranges.
DD: Is it all about painting or all about images?
Israel Lund: Both.