Mcfarlin began exploring this body of work in 2008, inspired by the obituary postings in Art in America’s Annual Guide. He was initially struck by how the lives of these art-world celebrities were reduced to a two-line sentence.
This kind of juried exhibition provides the opportunity to better know some of your scattered neighbors—to learn more about all those loners, hippies, socialites, cowpokes, scientists, and retired generals living at the end of some dirt road, some of whom are developing as artists, and a couple of whom might actually be waiting for that space ship, Lumpkin said.
Bernier intentionally did not affiliate with the early conceptual artists using text to make art, such as Ed Ruscha or Lawrence Weiner, or with Pop Art, for that matter. Bernier considers himself an original, unaffiliated with any movement or group. His work contains limited thematic content; one of the most striking elements of his practice is that he does not use words to make sense or to reference contemporary culture. “Initially I felt I had to break down the barriers of making sense by just listing words taken at random from the dictionary and putting them on canvas and board, sometimes by themselves, at other times with designed or familiar images in which the words were covered.”
Review of Margaret Neumann’s, “As I Once Knew It,” at Rule Gallery in Denver by Art Writer Leanne Goebel.