@CLEARING: Calvin Marcus Certainly Has Assistants

by Til Will

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There’s no sign.

Am I in the right place?

I look inside. No text, no art I can see.

It’s unlocked.

I’m greeted by a black-clad mysterioso with an oddly awkward already-half-around-the-corner “Hello.” Was it me rounding the corner too fast, or he?

Anyways, so I start digesting the narrative arrangement of 8‘ish canvases in a hazy confusion. I think I am where I intended to go, but still not entirely sure. The space is so minimal; it’s unclear if I’m still on planet earth.img_8753

I’ve stepped inside of some comic that I found while being a character within another comic. I’m flipping through the pages of a book about a really brutal civil war. I’m a medic walking through some tripped out Gettysburg- and there’s so many tongues out.

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It’s solemn, though it’s not really sad. It couldn’t be; the tongues are too funny.

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As I re-familiarize with the 3-dimensionality of my situation, I get up close. I look at the way these paintings were made. The craftsmanship of the canvas by itself is very robotic compared to the hand behind the brush. The marks appear to have been made quickly with lack of mass. It is clear that these canvases were painted with a tan base coat at the start.

At this point I still haven’t seen any text specifying who/what is happening.

Who is this artist? What kind of robot army do they have stretching canvases? Still no answers, only guesses.

Adornments on these maimed corpses boast prestige. Were these oozing, gangrenous characters once great generals? Warriors of legend??

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In the wake of ongoing atrocities against humanity by America, I can’t help but see a political nod. The painting approach is repetitious, and the installation has no clear beginning or end. Bullet wounds as subject matter open a can of worms. 

Why then do these paintings elicit chuckles? I’m subconsciously associating the aesthetic here with the likes of Superjail. Instead of a reaction like, ‘Wow guns need to stop being sold in the US”, I think something like, “that’s brutal, man” (in the shredder-bro tense). 

There is one thing to be sure of: this artist certainly has assistants – or do they?

Tyl Will

@CLEARING: Calvin Marcus Certainly Has Assistants

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