Ron Ter­ada: Jack

3 September–8 Octo­ber 2011

Ron Terada

Catri­ona Jef­fries is pleased to announce an exhi­bi­tion of Ron Terada’s new series of paint­ings, Jack. Ini­ti­ated in 2009 while on res­i­dency at the Banff Cen­tre, Ter­ada began the project of paint­ing the six spe­cific chap­ters from the book Jack Gold­stein and the CalArts Mafia that had been writ­ten by the Amer­i­can artist Jack Gold­stein, before his untimely sui­cide in 2003. The book chron­i­cles Goldstein’s life as an artist while at the same time chart­ing the emer­gence of artists from CalArts in the 70s, and their migra­tion to New York and the sub­se­quent fail­ures and suc­cesses of artists from the period. Writ­ten with cring­ing hon­esty, Goldstein’s writ­ing reveals the arche­typal pathos and tragedy of his own life, pre­sented as the ulti­mate myth­i­cal tale of the genius artist mar­tyred by the ego and star-driven work­ings of the 1980s art world.

Jack rep­re­sents a mate­r­ial loop back to Terada’s early paint­ings that he pro­duced through­out the 90s, which marred the mono­chrome with ephemeral, tex­tual ready-mades found within the art world (Ad Paint­ings, made from Art­fo­rum adver­tise­ments from the 80s), clas­si­fied ads (Per­sonal Paint­ings) and Terada’s own high­school year book (Grey Paint­ings). Ten years on, the Jack paint­ings speak to an influ­en­tial period of art-making, but elab­o­rate on the role that com­mer­cial inter­ests and social net­works have in the pro­duc­tion of such a his­tory. Gold­stein didn’t adhere to a clear chronol­ogy in his writ­ing for the book and Ter­ada sim­i­larly hasn’t fol­lowed any par­tic­u­lar order in the process of paint­ing each chap­ter. The paint­ings in the exhi­bi­tion present two com­plete chap­ters from the book, where Gold­stein writes about his early life grow­ing up as a teenage out­sider in Mon­treal and his sub­se­quent art edu­ca­tion at the Chouinard Art Insti­tute, which later became CalArts, in Los Ange­les. He writes as much about his own life as he does about the char­ac­ters and con­di­tions that sur­rounded him and the deep influ­ence artists such as John Baldessari, through his teach­ing at CalArts, had on stu­dents at the time.

Through Jack Ter­ada con­sid­ers the ever-pervasiveness of paint­ing as a pri­mary medium, not only through his choice to pro­duce the work as a series of paint­ings, but also as Gold­stein specif­i­cally speaks to the eco­nomic moti­va­tion behind his deci­sion to switch from a post-studio prac­tice to mak­ing paint­ings, as he felt he ‘had to address the gallery sys­tem’ to be known as an artist, or at least to make a liv­ing by doing so. Ter­ada may be con­sid­er­ing whether or not the same notion remains, as the paint­ings ambiva­lently acknowl­edge the moti­va­tions that lie beyond the pri­macy of the idea in the pro­duc­tion of a work of art. They also speak to an artist’s per­son­al­ity becom­ing tan­ta­mount to an artist’s work, as Gold­stein was told to drop his atti­tude by many of those around him, that charisma and charm would go a long way in help­ing his career. Terada’s Jack con­sid­ers the sta­tuses attrib­uted to suc­cess and how they man­i­fest, (con­cep­tu­ally sim­i­lar to his 2003 project Cat­a­logue). Goldstein’s trou­bled life is for­ever teth­ered to the read­ing of his work and iron­i­cally, the anx­i­ety that Gold­stein expe­ri­enced from con­stantly shift­ing from one medium to another in the mak­ing of his paint­ings, videos and records are what have now secured him as an impor­tant fig­ure within recent art history.

Ron Ter­ada (1969) was born in Van­cou­ver where he cur­rently lives and works. He has a forth­com­ing solo exhi­bi­tion, Being There at MCA Chicago in Novem­ber of this year and his work will be included the group exhi­bi­tion Future Ret­ro­spec­tive at VOX Con­tem­po­rary Image, Mon­treal in 2011. His 2010 solo exhi­bi­tion Who I Think I Am trav­eled to Ikon, Birm­ing­ham; the Hay­ward Gallery, Lon­don; Wal­ter Philips Gallery, Banff; (all 2010); the Justina M. Bar­nicke Gallery at the Uni­ver­sity of Toronto (2011). Recent solo exhi­bi­tions include Voight Kampff, Catri­ona Jef­fries (2008); You Have Left The Amer­i­can Sec­tor, Art Gallery of Wind­sor (2005); Cat­a­logue, Con­tem­po­rary Art Gallery, Van­cou­ver (2003). His work has been included in a num­ber of inter­na­tional group exhi­bi­tions, includ­ing It Is What It Is, National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa (2011); Act V: Power Alone, Witte De With, Rot­ter­dam (2010); Gallery, Galerie, Gal­le­ria, Norma Man­gione Gallery, Turin (2010); Trac­ta­tus Logico-Catalogicus, VOX Con­tem­po­rary Image, Mon­treal (2008); The Idea of North, Isabella Bor­tolozzi Galerie, Berlin (2007); Shang­hai Bien­nial (2006); Con­crete Lan­guage, Con­tem­po­rary Art Gallery, Van­cou­ver (2006); Paint, Van­cou­ver Art Gallery, Van­cou­ver (2006). Terada’s work has been the focus of two major mono­graphs, Who I Think I Am (2010) and Cat­a­logue (2003).

For fur­ther infor­ma­tion or press enquires please con­tact Catri­ona Jef­fries or Anne Low at +1 604 736 1554.