~ALAN & MICHAEL FLEMING – BUSHWICK OPEN STUDIOS 2012
ALAN & MICHAEL FLEMING: GAME ON – is so RIGHT !!
as you might see, about their only barely discernible variance is their height, and – who came into the world first. which is what this piece is about, the cube represents the hardcore difference physically, and the 6 minute difference in hitting . . . planet earth.
ALAN and MICHAEL FLEMING, ‘Psychic Color Calendars’, 2011. one twin lived in New York and one in Chicago, during 2011 – and they tried to see if their long distance intuitive connection, some would say telepathic abilities, would produce matches that could trump distance on a daily color (lottery) chart involving 5 basic color options.
nope. they only averaged about 3 matches a month. though I did get to overhear that that when they are in closer proximity – and meet up in real time – most often they find themselves in the same color shirt. a source of friction when they were younger. (!!)
but it would be a mistake to simply take, or label – their twin state as a psychological basis for their art – it’s more like a very formal, visual, and spatial (!!) – Mondrian hard edge headset – meets new generation artist, head-on.
in a concisely right-on essay, “All of Me: Alan and Michael Fleming’s Relations’ – produced in conjunction with their recent ‘ALAN & MICHAEL FLEMING: GAME ON’ show at THREEWALLS in CHICAGO, March 9-April 21, 2012 – the essay’s author, DAVID GETSY, says it best:
“Alan and Michael Fleming chose sameness as the baseline for their practice. Twin brothers, they have consistently played off this inter-relation in performance, sculpture, and drawing. These two artists make art that refers back to the fact that they are one, irrevocably juxtaposed, pair.Their work is not however, just about their status as twins. More fundamentally, their emphasis on their near identicality offers an account – sometimes absurd, often playful, but always searching – of how we all relate to and rely on others. No one is really just one, and the Flemings’ work speaks to that very human predicament.”
DAVID GETSY is the Goldabelle McComb Finn Professor of art History, Theory, and Criticism at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
the ‘props’ – for ‘Rock Paper Scissors’.
the fun thing about getting inside artist studios of course – is seeing up close and personal, all the elements behind the scenes, that make up the artworks. and the theory.
more from the DAVID GETSY essay:
“All our choices and chances (!!) make us who we are as individuals. Game Over captures this with a starting point of simplicity and sameness that nevertheless cannot help but yield uniqueness.”
“They first became known for their performances in which they combined and contorted their bodies into regular geometric forms in relation to architectural settings.” – David Getsy, and went on to produce a series of short videos of themselves climbing buildings . . a natural outgrowth of what they said was an early fascination, starting with treehouses in the ‘backyard’ of childhood.
dressed the same, and with the same natural instinctive gait – the slight difference in height and heft – is completely lost – and something very fascinating and Mondrian – even sculptural, roots across the space, the local – and the screen.
the FLEMING TWINS in GOWANUS, NYC !!
they said, funnily enough . . . it was harder to film these kind of jaunts in New York City, where amidst the hyper density and even higher, curiosity factor of the street-wise natives, someone was bound to notice. and no, it’s not legal to climb buildings in NYC.
apart from the ‘caper’ – it’s a super great visual. as is all their work.
and though this is hardly . . . ‘see something say something’, BUT – don’t laugh !!
if you want a funny digression, check out a recent ‘twins doing bad things’ – as in real bad things – in a parking lot – of a bank !! which happened, talk about random luck & chance !! just the day before.
see: ‘LONG ISLAND TWINS BUSTED in BANK ROBBERY’ – NEW YORK POST, JUNE 1, 2012 (!!)
the eagle-eyed New Yorker who dropped the dime – said the one who went into the bank, stood out and looked very suspicious because . . . he had his hoodie hood hood – pulled up way over his head, on a very very hot day !! the article goes on to quote the police as saying: twin criminals “are very rare”. o.k. so even more funny, to have just happened, yesterday ?
to a first time observer, their countenances are exact replicas, esp as the inner from-the-ground-up intelligence & humor that lights up their faces – flickers across each face – in a kind of two-step.
when they went to close down the computer screening equipment, it was like, the more oblivious they were to each other, being physically back-to-back at that moment, the more they moved and functioned in an unspoken lock-step. Mondrian x two. – meets determination rolled up into one easy-going, FED EX package – going places. that’s for sure.
you go !! BROOKLYN.
you go, NEW GENERATION – NYC – ART SCENE !!
tell ’em to forget their “downtown don” wannabe – yearbooks – and, you !! GO take over the streets.
and kiss the old scene. good-bye.
downtown nyc ? it’s just – art scab city. as in: been there, done that. esp when it comes on – in BULLY formation.
piece by piece, it’s o.k. but time to blow the cork on that scene. esp when it claims to be “the” as in the “ONLY”, NYC art scene. au contraire, 500+ artists in Brooklyn ain’t taking that “no entry” ceiling, lying down.
new wave coming in, gonna blow you away.
BROOKLYN, you rule.
PHOTOS: NANCY SMITH, BUSHWICK OPEN STUDIOS, BROOKLYN, N.Y. JUNE 2, 2012