Munch Gallery is pleased to present ‘Super Powers and Special Abilities’, a solo exhibition by Scooter LaForge. The exhibition will feature new work on canvas, drawing and sculpture.
Among the various pejoratives by which high art casually dismisses what it deems inconsequential, like saying something is pretty, happy is just not one of those words that comes easily into the cultural discourse. In a way that makes the very notion of happiness somewhat subversive in contemporary art, and it is, far above the aspects of terror, loss and morbidity that haunt the paintings of Scooter LaForge, the happy-quotient that makes his work at once so compelling and challenging. Both his modus operandi and his social aesthetics, LaForge will tell you that he makes art to make himself happy and that if any painting can be said to have a function his would be to make others happy. Like any adjective, particularly when applied to fine art, happy is a most relative term. What brings joy to Scooter might just as easily invoke any level of discomfort to others. More to the point however, we must in turn take some measure of the inverse as the raison d’être for these pictures. Happiness, for all the ways it means different things to different people, is ultimately an idealized construct of personal desires and expectations set against the less pleasant realities of being. As a compulsive drive within his studio practice, we are particularly attracted to LaForge’s conception of joy and pleasure precisely because it speaks so profoundly to a greater, more profound sorrow within.
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