Kyle Thurman's Flowers

Hasabie Kidanu
May 29, 2014 3:02AM

In his process-based paintings of daisy flowers, Kyle Thurman adds a new dimension to his ongoing exploration of the relationship between a subject and its role in the construction of a final product. An idea sprouted from his enduring interest in the practice of flower shops and flower companies artificially dying natural flowers, he adapts an idiosyncratic technique of pigment extraction and painting. His process starts with purchasing a bouquet of daisies from local bodegas and boiling the dyed petals to extract the artificial coloring. Then, Thurman spreads the same flowers (dried) over raw canvas and uses the extraction as a spray to fill in the exposed surface. In the end product, the flowers reveal and conceal their own representation, and the viewer trusts the existence of the subjects based on the obviousness of the shapes revealed. Thurman somewhat recalls Yves Klein’s body paintings from Untitled Anthropometry, 1960, whereby the traces of the subjects establish a relationship to their referent. Thurman’s work explores the idea of a ‘process at work,’ while tracing the passage of an original existence and underlining the tension between a presence and an absence.

Hasabie Kidanu
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