Thursday, November 29, 2012

Eric Zimmerman

Black Cat, Dark Room, Not There, 2012. Graphite on paper. 26" x 21"

A repost at

A new kind of conceptual art has emerged from the past masters and Eric Zimmerman seems to exemplify this new breed of artist. His works are not only concerned with thoughtful engagement, but he also displays an impressive level of craftsmanship. Art Palace is exhibiting Zimmerman's current works, created from the time he was in a residency program.

To be honest, I was extremely nervous about writing a review for this show because I fear I will not distill the big ideas Zimmerman has produced in these works. For one, I have not seen the second half of the show at the Dallas Reading Room, which opened with a performance. Although, the Art Palace show can easily stand alone, the 4 hour drive might be worth it.

Sometimes when a performance is involved with an exhibition, you get the feeling that the objects left over are more artifacts of a show than real art pieces. Zimmerman however, hasn’t made artifacts, but real thought provoking art pieces that feel old school conceptual without the “phone it in” quality. Take his collage on paper pieces. He cuts up the image from one page in a National Geographic and re-organized it into a new composition then makes you puzzle how he deconstructed the image so well to re-fit into this new image. NG are likely the most sourced material for collages than any other magazine or book, but Zimmerman’s approach switched my mind from feeling unimpressed, to suddenly blowing my mind with his craft. Zimmerman’s unassuming collages wake you from the ordinary iconoclasm.

An iconic image created by Zimmerman is his graphite on paper drawing “Endless (Disharmony).” This black and white broke-open cassette tape is rich with craft, but also with symbolically heavy ideas. The drawing appears like a photograph with black background and thin white boarder. In the exhibition space on the opposite wall is star shaped blast of cassette tape with the recording of the first moon landing. The famous words of Armstrong as he set foot on the moon would easily fit on a 30 second endless tape. We have all heard the words for generations now , repeated and re-shared as a collective experience, thus an endless recording plays in all our heads collectively and we experience it in much the same way. Much like Zimmerman imagines his show would cross the space and time of Dallas to Houston; his tape crosses generations of people’s experiences.

There is so much more to these works than just the suffice image. Zimmerman makes you think and experience time and space with an aesthetic experience, and for this I thank him. Let yourself be taken to a higher level of thought by visiting this show of “Endless Disharmony and Telltale Ashes,” Art Palace before October 27th.

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