Joe Fyfe

Region: Northeast

 Early one morning in the restaurant of the Hotel Chelsea in Cologne, across the room were two local men. They had obviously been celebrating all night. I drank my coffee while one kept loudly reciting some phrase in English that he didn’t know. This was probably the precedent for the new paintings. When words are painted in other languages, they become material.

A painting has a responsibility to address its limits, so I have attempted to reconcile painting culture with the contemporary world. Globalism is at present as much about the improvisational architecture and tools of marginal populations as what takes place online.

What I make them with––cut-up banners from Asia and elsewhere––and the recent introduction of text from poetry are significant in this regard as they are arbitrary: they are things in my life that are conveniently at hand so there is no reason not to put them in. What this means is that the fact of the paintings as paintings is as much a concern to me as the subject matter.