Mark Liebenrood

Michael Raedecker: volume

The paint is thin, washy. Drips and splatters everywhere. Grey, silver, one work in dark blue. Two in green. Looking at the one in pale pink, I thought of wedding cakes. And then, moving to my right, there they were: two cakes. But most of the work of the paintings is done not with painting or drawing, but by thread. Fine cotton thread, thicker wool. Single colours, braided yarns. In places the yarns have been twisted apart into tufted outgrowths from the surface. I want to touch them, feel their softness.

Houses, curtains, cakes, a chandelier; all are outlined with thread. Sometimes fine lines, single or in parallel. Elsewhere a garden bush is a small pile of overlapping lines of thread. Mostly they describe outline or contour. In pretend, the thread is just there, a bright multicoloured scribble stretching across the surface.

Then there are the holes. Smaller than your little fingernail, the broken threads of the canvas are exposed across the dark openings. It’s as if something has been eating through the surface. They seem incredibly fragile, these delicately stitched works.

Wide canvases are divided into panels vertically and stitched together. The houses are cut into fragments, partial frames from a drive-by movie. Who lives there? The chandelier doesn’t look like it belongs in these modest bungalows, but maybe the cakes do, or did. The closed curtains certainly do, keeping the world out.

Published in a-n magazine, May 2012

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