Saturday, March 04, 2017

Critical Masque at Schema Projects

Critical Masque
Lawrence Swan

March 3 – April 2, 2017 
Opening reception, Friday, March 3rd 6-9pm
92 St Nicholas Ave between Hart and Suydam Brooklyn NY 11237 

Hermetic Memo to Self (and detail) 

Friday, January 06, 2017

Notes on X

The masks and figures I have been making are mostly, but not entirely, related to reflections on images of a certain archetype I refer to as X, and my misreadings of sayings attributed to X and to letters written by a certain revolutionary mystic whose own encounter with X came by way of an altered state experience.
A few years ago I made some paper masks and Fred Valentine asked me if I ever considered using another, more durable, material. As it happened I had been thinking of using coffee cans, cut, flattened, and folded, with eyeholes poked and jaggedly cut. Right away I saw these masks as representations of X. 
The figures are made of scrap wood and the image is derived from drawings of an Everyman character — whose gender is obviously signified — conflated with a familiar archetype of an executed revolutionary or sacrificed deity, depending on one’s projection, and resulting in an image that was startling, but which seemed perfectly truthful to me.
X could be read as a martyred bodhisattva and victim of state violence, but he is also an iconoclastic revision of an iconic image whose representation has historically been regulated by the authority of a patriarchy that I believe is in its last daze.

Wednesday, January 04, 2017

six ceremonial masks for the new year

figure weave

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Show at Valentine opens January 6, 2017

This assembled painting is one of the pieces in the show I'm in with Mary-Ann Monforton at  Valentine Gallery in January.

and this is another

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

waiting for X

mask of X

                                                                       waiting for X

opened eye

double mask

I am waiting for X.
The waning supermoon hangs on the sky, a crumbling white disk
in the daylight, 
a pretty day in an invisible war, 
in the Eye of an invisible storm.   
It is early in the morning and I am waiting for X

I perform a mass for X, and contemplate X,
and wait for X to speak from the whirlwind

 X marks Here or There in my unreliable maps.
Here You Are and There is where your treasure is.
Your treasure is buried in the abyss.

X holds the fire of creator destroyer
X beats the drum of existence
X says Fear Not, I am unarmed
X indicates the revolutionary situation
X crushes the ideology of power and possession
X blows the horn that blasts down the walls
X dances in the temple
X takes a Giant Step into the unlimited

I am watching for X, and I am waiting for X within me.
X stands at the Door.

Friday, November 11, 2016

dream drawing

I dreamed I suggested to Lori that we do a drawing together, that she start it and I'll finish it. She handed me a sheet of paper that was partly filled on the right side and the left side was blank. In the middle of the blank side I drew an eye.
A few days later I looked through her archives and made a photocopy of the first unfinished drawing I found, a a notebook page of aphorisms. I turned it on its side and drew the same kind of eye I drew in the dream.


While I was looking for a drawing to use I came upon this diary she kept when she was eleven.

Friday, October 14, 2016

figure on a post

scrap wood, tin cans. clothesline, nails, and galvanized wire