Born in the mid-1980s, Josh Reames and Kate Bonner are immersed in questioning and challenging the veracity of the image through their respective mediums at a time when the predominance of images in culture at large is reshaping the social and political landscape around the world with very profound and serious ramifications.
In his paintings, Josh Reames mines his generation's proclivity toward social media while disrupting the traditional function of formal space, structure, and narrative in painting. His work considers abstraction and painting in relation to the internet, and is informed by the strange space where a majority of viewership takes place online through blogs and websites. Reames’ conceptual framework functions as a kind of filtration device for cultural byproduct—his object-filled canvases reference a vocabulary of transient emojis and digital signs, untethered in space, that jettison all notions of hierarchies. In these paintings, depth, dimension, and the artist's hand are typically lost in translation from object to image, allowing the information to exist as it might appear on a digital screen.
Kate Bonner treats the photograph as both an object and a process with the ability to engage and manipulate physical reality. In this sense, the photograph is not simply an object on a wall, in space—delineated by its own edges and singular surface—but an active agent with the capacity to shape the physical space in and around it. It moves beyond its exclusive nature whose purpose is to capture a moment vis a vis an image representing or mirroring a real-world object “frozen in time”, to a condition and function of that very reality. By inverting the primacy of the image and subverting the narrative aspect of photography, Bonner's work explores new territory in the photography-sculpture relationship—not simply by the way in which the photograph affects our experience of the image but in the experience of the physical environment that it engages and controls.