Ben Jones "Comics"
The Hole NYC
Ben Jones - Comics
Softcover, 8 pages.
More about the exhibition:
September 8th-October 2, 2016
The Hole is proud to announce our first solo exhibition by new media pioneer and comic visionary Ben Jones. What else? “Paper Rad member”, “Paper Radio partner”, “animated television executive”, “post-minimal sculptor” “video-painting inventor” and “zine master”, what else? We are very excited.
For this exhibition Jones will exhibit over thirty oil stick on canvas paintings that look at narrative and intent, line and composition in paintings–and in comics. Taken as a whole, in order, these panel paintings comprise a newly published comic zine, available at the exhibition. From comic it begins, and to comic it must return; but in between there are a lot of things to ponder in the exhibition.
In a way this is a “back to basics” exhibition for an artist who has exhibited video paintings, shaped panel paintings, furniture, hacked computer cartridges, performances, award-winning websites and who has spent the past five-plus years making network animated television. Comics form the alpha and omega of Jones’ practice, a creative bedrock for his diverse pursuits, and it will be fascinating to take a closer, longer look at what comics are and can be.
The paintings are highly regular, mostly 3 x 3 foot squares on which are painted scenes, characters, text or items. Hung somewhat in “order” the paintings tell bits of stories and juxtapose absurdist vignettes. We think Ben’s grey short hair cat features prominently as a character in the works, which also include hamburgers, Louis CK and “the internet”.
“Comics” shows off the compelling way Jones draws and the unique way he tells a story, but also contains the distillation of the artist’s radical and experimental creative life, at least for those that know how to see it between the lines. Like the humble power of his early comic zines, this exhibition is not really about him but instead a painting show about the simple and transcendent potential of paper and pencil.