David Schutter

Region: Midwest

Often I am not sure I believe in essences. They are characteristics I think to exist in things. Because of this they are also a type of ideal. Untouchable, formless, nameless, they remain inside something as a kind of distinction that separates one thing from another. Though I can tell things apart, I often doubt that I can find an essence. My ability to find them would preclude their very essential character. What I may be doing is admitting my location when I paint. I am here, I am there, but what I want to be is very close. The whole process of painting is a step towards something. Often I feel that this step instead of bringing me closer, only points out the horizon.

These paintings and drawings are made from memory. A cluster of plums, a card house, or a piece of wild game are things that I can draw on from my own experiences as much as their being ubiquitous in a traditional genre of painting. With these things, I hope to negotiate through empirical models towards my own perception. When I remember each object I am not revisiting them as I would in life. The plums, for instance that come to me in memory are not just “plums”–a static picture in a temporal locus–they are something else all together. I remember the plums at a certain time; they are minor object-events. I am trying to make paintings that serve as the remainder of the object-event phenomena found in memory while also being aware that the painting itself is an object-event. Memory is the vehicle, objects the agency in a process that is devoted to understanding perception and ideals, history and limitations.