Roe Ethridge at Andrew Kreps.
Super rough/free floating thoughts while I work this show out:
Ethridge talks a lot about “fugue states” and sequencing work for the world of the book in the press release for this show… I mainly see kitsch and nostalgia. Regardless, I keep thinking about the images in this show. I don’t really know if I fully “get” it, but I’m interested in the sense of fluidity in the work. I left with the sense that there isn’t really a single direct narrative or reading of the images… Which is interesting. It’s kind of like Ethridge took a series of photographs that fit into different camps of his work as fashion photographer, personal snapshots, and nostalgic still lives and jumbled them together to see how they relate. It’s as if he’s inviting the viewer to create a narrative, while purposely disrupting any chance at narrative possibility. It’s the sort of thing he’s done many times with his work in the past (Le Lux, Rockaway Redux, etc), and trying to force some sort of resolution on a body of his work has always felt kind of frustrating and pointless to me… So it seems better to let them float unmoored from their original intentions and appreciate them on their own, rather than analyze them within some vague relationship to time, weirdly Oedipal nostalgic depictions of women, and mass produced products/advertising/”high culture”. They refer equally to the past and the highly contemporary present in a way that sort of makes my head spin, so I’d rather just be like “hey, there are some really weird and great images in here… Glad I stopped in here on my lunch break” and leave it at that.