Monday, September 21, 2009

free material


(I am going to turn this into gold, but for now it looks like this.)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


Concepts and Images is the class that forces me to come up with bullshit answers to justify my work. The funny thing about bullshit answers though is that they have to come from somewhere, and more often than not, it's a place that is alarmingly honest.

Here's a statement that doesn't get especially deep, but does briefly explain where I am going with this particular body of work I'll be getting into this semester. It's just weird to have an answer other than "because it looks beautiful" -or rather, to find out that the answer "because it looks beautiful" means so much more than wanting to create something aesthetically sublime.


Ash D. Nowak


Concepts & Images

Fall 2009

Smoke, Mirrors, And Other Arbitrary Decisions

This Fall I am looking to take myself out of one comfort zone in order to explore another. While my past works generally refer to other people in the very literal sense of portraiture, my promotion of others actually goes far beyond the imagery I create. I am often concerned with others over myself, how I can help, improve, and even preserve their lives. Building up others is easy, from their likenesses I reproduce, to the answers that always come without a second thought.

What’s not as easy is showing myself the same maintenance. I often feel that while my human error is quite ostensible, I lack balance in never once having naturally possessed or at least created a semi-presentable version of myself, even if only temporarily. Looking for something less apparent than a series of portraits, I am hoping for a more abstract representation to be achieved through images similar to those created by the mathematical equation called Delaunay Triangulation. The linking of the points created by this equation is referred to as a Voronoi Diagram, which has the appearance of faceted stones. (Apt, as this is an equation often used to measure crystal cell growth, or the growth and change of other molecules.) As with most formulas, they are very precise and very beautiful.

Still, I want to abandon the preconceived ideal of flawlessness. Using common and disordered materials to obtain a clean finish, I can create works that maintain the comfort and reliability of imperfection, but still promote the details of a polished and finalized aesthetic. Not unlike an alchemist, I hope to build gold from dirt, and diamonds from wood in both literal and figurative senses.

"When I am working on a problem I never think about beauty. I only think about how to solve the problem. But when I have finished, if the solution is not beautiful, I know it is wrong."
– R. Buckminster Fuller


unrelated: taking the printers out of the library was a really good idea. thanks again, ccs.

Thursday, September 10, 2009


School started this week, and I'm finding new opportunities both on and off campus that I usually don't notice. I have a lot to consider, but for once, I'm not scared of my options.

Here's some of what I've done today:

Friday, September 4, 2009

Oh, right.

I forgot that this is supposed to be a studio blog. Ok, well there is this really great part in A Bigger Splash where David Hockney is talking with a gallerist about his lagging productivity. The conversation is something to the effect of Hockney explaining that he started the painting, and it didn't go anywhere for six months, so he scrapped it and completed the new one in two weeks. The gallerist takes this as Hockney can finish a painting in two weeks, which Hockney corrects him and explains, "I couldn't have created the second in two weeks if I didn't spend six months on the first. So really it takes me 6 months and two weeks for a painting." -I love this film because, while I am not David Hockney (yet,) I feel like this often.

Anyway, maybe a couple of years ago I took pictures of Jon after he had gotten his face split open in a fight. They were supposed to be turned into a painting, and I made some pretty decent headway on it for a while. Then I started working on little details of the work to avoid the piece as a whole, as I was really excited about the final product, and just terrified of screwing it up. So, this is about as far as I got on the original:

I think everyone has seen this one, anyway- it's not complete, and won't be, while I haven't trashed it completely, it is face down in the canvas graveyard that I keep in the corner of my studio. Since then, I have restarted this painting FOUR TIMES. Only one of those I can even really call a painting, as the rest were just the lay-out drawings. All were too big, or the composition wasn't right, or the canvas wasnt' gessoed (sp?) right. Any excuse I could use to start over, I guess. So I finally built a new canvas to the preferred dimensions (about half the size of the original) and started painting tonight. This is how far I got before I stopped for a while. This is a diferrent image that I think has better compostion that the first. It is starting out very differently that the first image, super ghostly and underpainted. This didn't take me very long and I feel comfortable with my break point.

I'll keep you updated.

Texts from Anthony.

Sep 1, 2009 3:34:26 PM

Dan is going to try and eat 50 chicken nuggets in one hour. im selling squares at a buck a pop for when hes gonna quit. you want any numbers?

I responded with the number 50, because I feel that Dan is motivated by the urge to never be wrong, no matter what. I don't know if this happend yet, or if I owe Anthony a dollar or what. I should call him.