David Klamen and The Meta-Painting

Mark Moore Fine Art
May 15, 2019 7:43PM

David Klamen (American, b.1961) is a contemporary painter whose work grows in conjunction with his interest in philosophy and scholarship, centralized around the questions,"How do I know what I know?" and "How do I know myself?" Klamen paints figuratively and abstractly, sometimes combining the two by incorporating geometric lines or patterns atop his high finished landscapes. Says Paul Gray of Richard Gray Gallery, " His current paintings test epistemological strategies as diverse as OP Art (and its implication that knowledge may be a purely retinal experience), empiricism (the idea that the sole source of knowledge is direct quantifiable experience), introspection, and others. In this investigation, Klamen plays with the history of art, utilizing modern and pre-modern conventions as metaphors for our communal search for meaning."

David Klamen Untitled 2015 (Blue Meta-Painting Installation)

In recent years, the work of David Klamen has used various visual images and processes to investigate the question of how we know our cultures and ourselves. In his most recent variation on this theme, Klamen has created a collection of paintings of paintings, or “meta-paintings.” This multi-canvas installation consists of an historically diverse set of twenty-four separate paintings, each inspired by a masterwork, carefully arranged together to create a unified installation.

DETAIL IMAGE: Untitled 2015 (Blue Meta-Painting Installation)

Consistent with his other works, Untitled 2015 (Blue Meta-Painting Installation) overlaps multiple artistic traditions into a single work, combining the installation style of the nineteenth century salon with his trompe l’oeil meta-paintings. From a distance, the large oval installation offers an intricately composed play of fractured angles that suggest a nearly cubistic sense of space. Rectangular canvases depicting paintings at tilted angles ricochet our attention across the picture planes. From the sparkling gilded frames of the old masters to the punctuated color of Mondrian and Monet, Klamen compresses the scale of the originals into a carefully orchestrated intertextual performance. Like an art historical library, this meta-painting installation offers an experience of ongoing comparison, discovery and contemplation.

DETAIL IMAGE" Untitled 2015 (Blue Meta-Painting Installation)

David Klamen earned his Bachelor's of Fine Arts at the University of Illinois, Champaign/Urbana in 1983 and his Master's of Fine Arts in Painting at the School of the Art Institute in 1985. He is currently is a Professor of Fine Arts at Indiana University Northwest. Klamen is represented in the following public collections (to name but a few): Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Chazen Museum of Art, Madison, Wisconsin; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; Krannert Art Museum, Champaign, Illinois; National Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul, Korea; The Searle Collection of Contemporary Art, Chicago; University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, Illinois; Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento, California; McNay Art Museum, San Antonio; Elmhurst Art Museum; and the Berkeley Art Museum.

An Exclusive ARTSY Online Exhibition focused solely on this work can be viewed at at: http://bit.ly/2vZSGLr

Mark Moore Fine Art