Thursday, March 11, 2010
My first encounter with the slapdash work of Steve Keene, like most I would imagine, was the cover of Pavement's 1995 classic "Wowee Zowee".
The man is nothing if not the definition of prolific. Painting dozens of the same image at a time, stroke by stroke, each painting (usually on 1/4" or 1/2" ply) is a subtle and unique variation on the next.
I have a couple. I think a lot of people have a couple. It's difficult not to. With the volume of work Steve has created (noted on his site as presently 140,000. Up from the 36,000 in the 1998 film below), they are everywhere.
As described on his site Steve says, “I want buying my paintings to be like buying a CD: it’s cheap, it’s art and it changes your life, but the object has no status. Musicians create something for the moment, something with no boundaries and that kind of expansiveness is what I want to come across in my work.”
The film was made by Brett Vapnek over a decade ago, but I would imagine Steve has yet to slow down.