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Artists Christian Rex van Minnen
Christian Rex van Minnen (US)
Mono Mania 3_2016_monotype_ink on paper_56 x 38 cm_22 x 15 in_800.jpg
"Mono Mania 3" 2016, monotype, ink on paper, 56 x 38 cm, 22 x 15 in
”It looks almost traditional, an oil on panel, meticulously glazed. But really, it’s a portrait of European and American History as a colorful tumor. It’s as if the Dutch Painters had ingested some magical psychoactive that allowed them to see the full scope of history ahead — American Colonialism, the Genocide of Native Americans, the seeds of racism and social injustice, the prison systems, the ghettos, the rich history of oppression beginning in those first celebratory brush strokes… Everything, all at once. Their still lifes exploded with globs of flesh sprouting symbolic tattoos. Their portrait faces of Colonial figures ate themselves, caved in and grew over with greasy ridges, instant scar tissues sucking arrowheads further inside. But theirs didn’t. Van Minnen’s did.

Van Minnen produces about two paintings a month but works on a dozen at a time. There are layers and layers of glaze which takes a long time to dry. Not all his paintings are heavy. “Others are less didactic. Pizza Bro Death Cult has a three-eyed pizza dog in it. Just cuz. This process ‘looks’ like subtext and in some cases it informs and in others just adds layers of confusion. On a conceptual level. I am really interested in confusion itself; the difficulty to really embrace a plurality of truth,” Christian Rex van Minnen says.

That plurality of truth is a pretty horrifying concept, but the artist approaches it head on, regurgitating something that’s all things, a corporeal manifestation of decades of history, from the disingenuous ambitions of early Colonialism to the contorted, mutated ideals of the 60s. It’s body horror. And it’s very beautiful.”

Marina Galperina about Christian Rex van Minnen’s ”Glazed and Confused” series, ANIMAL, May 1, 2014.

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