Artist: David Snyder
Exhibition title: 2THNDNL
Venue: Michael Benevento, Los Angeles, US
Date: January 23 – March 5, 2016
Photography: images copyright and courtesy the artist and Michael Benevento, Los Angeles
Michael Benevento is pleased to present 2THNDNL , a solo exhibition of video and installation-based works by artist David Snyder.
The exhibition is comprised of three video works and one sprawling constructed installation built from a combination of found street detritus and hand-made rough stucco shelving. The shelving supports objects like found lamps and CD players, which are plugged in. Recorded sounds from three auctions (Christies, QVC, and Texas Cattle) overlap within the installation and are among the collage of sounds inside the total exhibition. Opposing video monitors in the two front rooms feature sound as well, with one video of barking dogs and one of inter-spliced heads repeating the name “Ronald Reagan”. In the third video, projected in the video room, Snyder offers a proposal for reinvigorating the American economy, in which Blockbuster Video stores are converted into guano (bat shit) factories. Stucco application in Snyder’s shelving installation is piled up and splattered in a manner reminiscent of guano.
What does “Ronald Reagan” mean? What support structures hold those various meanings up and which ones are collapsing? Concepts gain meaning over time, through the normalizing force of repetition, routine. But they are invariably flawed, and therefore subject to collapse. When obtuse ideas find form through representation and subsequently break apart Snyder is there to characterize that schism. Representations commonly become detached and illegible through semantic satiation, a redundant pounding that leaves us numb to a representation’s actual meaning or link to its referent, like the ad infinitum repetition of “Ronald Reagan”. Those cracking foundations of meaning are then repeated, warped, mangled, reconstituted and built upon as is materially present in the shelving installation. In 2THNDNL , as is consistently the case in his work, Snyder finds access to the faulty and crumbling imaginary theatres of support that struggle to keep meanings intact.
David Snyder, Swansong, 2016 (still from video)
David Snyder, The Guano, 2016 (still from video)
David Snyder, Ronald Reagan, Fathers and Sons, 2016 (still from video)