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Seeing Red by Kenny Cole
painting / drawing / installation
Kenny Cole
The Portland Garage at 173 Neal Street
KENNY COLE’S “SEEING RED” – A FIRST FRIDAY POP-UP AT THE GARAGE (Oct 23: Portland, ME) The “Portland Garage” will feature a “pop up” show titled “Seeing Red” featuring recent gouache drawings on paper by Kenny Cole, November 6, 2015 from 8pm to 10pm, after the First Friday Art Walk. There will be live music and refreshments. This event is free and open to the public. “Seeing Red” will feature three recent series’ and works in progress, including “Polar Vortex,” “Drone Legislation” and “Homes in Maine: Signature Collection.” Each series share in common a red color scheme. Cole states that this color “holds a great deal of linguistic baggage” and his efforts as an artist are to “mold and manipulate this language in order to challenge deep held assumptions and offer a new way of thinking and seeing.” Much of these works are drawings of hand drawn text. The “Drone Legislation” series was sourced from state legislation passed, starting in 2013, regarding regulatory policies that different states have applied to commercial sUAS (drone) operation. On view will be his “Drone Legislation: Virginia” a set of five gouache drawings that contain the complete legislative language of Virginia’s law. In 2015, 45 states have considered 166 bills related to drones. Issues here range from prohibiting the entering the airspace of an individual in order to capture an image or recording of that individual engaging in a private, personal, or familial activity without permission to the weaponizing of drones as done by a teenager in Connecticut last year. Within Cole’s rendered transcription of his “Drone Legislation: Virginia” he circles out in word search fashion his own intuitively discovered words like: Orwell, Orgy, Last Supper and Mewl, giving the dry text a saucy and suggestive undertone. “Homes in Maine: Signature Collection” text was sourced from a “magazine” quality real estate brochure insert highlighting homes for sale to the 1%. The language tries to sex up the mundane features of each home’s countertops, woodwork and triple bay garages. Cole inserts his own antagonistic and suggestive imagery to push the drawings along. "Polar Vortex" is a series of small gouache drawings, which depict pole dancing. Cole addresses here the idea of pole dancing as a form of healthy exercise. It is within this obvious cultural shift that lies at the crux of his interest. He states: “Consciously I am trying to sympathetically depict my female forms as struggling and striving. Unconsciously I am probing my own role as a heterosexual male, the essential driving force behind the emergence of pole dancing as a phenomenon.” “Seeing Red” is free and open to the public 8 – 10 p.m.as an after-party of Portland’s First Friday Art Walk. Musical performers at the opening will include Jeff Badger, Daniel Kany and others. The Portland Garage is located at: 173 Neal Street in Portland, Maine (just off Congress, six blocks west of the PMA) For info and contact, visit: http://kennycole.com/seeing-red