JM HOWEY: "Stay In Bed"

20 Nov - 19 Dec 2015 STANDARD (OSLO)
Installation Views
Press release








20.11.-19.12.2015 / Preview: Friday 20.11.2015 / 19.00-21.00




STANDARD (OSLO) is proud to announce its first solo exhibition with Brooklyn-based artist JM Howey.


"Paintings should always be painted neatly and legibly. Only a bad painter forgets to apply themselves to the clarity of both the thoughts and the mark making. You should always think first before you paint. To start a painting with an unfinished thought is sloppiness that can never be forgiven. And yet the slothful artist believes that gestures will arise from other gestures. That is nothing but a vain and dangerous idea though. You get tired from walking on a country road much faster if you don't have a goal in mind. - Stops, breaks and other such pauses are a mistake to neglect, a mistake with a further consequence: untidiness of style. Style is a sense of order. Anyone with an unclear, untidy, unsightly mind will paint in a style with those same qualities. From the style, says a proverb old and clichéd but no less true for all that, you can know the person. - When painting a painting, your elbows can't fly around too wildly back and forth. That annoys the painter next to you, which is no doubt not insensitive to disturbances since they too are a thinker and an artist. Painting is about getting quietly worked up. Anyone who can't sit still but who always has to act loud and self-important to get their work done will never be able to express anything lively and beautiful. - It's much prettier, and thus much quicker, and thus much more sensitive and pleasing to paint on clean, smooth canvas, so always make sure you have some ready. Why else are there so many art supply stores?


Conveying something thoughtful is good, but wanting to stuff your work too full of thoughts is something you should avoid. An artwork, like any other work for that matter, should be pleasant to read and to use. Too many thoughts and opinions make the simple framework, in other words the form on which every painting must be draped, just collapse. What, then, is a painting? A quarry, a landslide, a raging fire that may be splendid to look at but is also very sad. Someone with no thoughts doesn't need their nose rubbed in this point, since there is no way they will overload their construction anyway. - Humor can be used in paintings, but only as a subtle, delicate adornment. Anyone funny by nature needs to pay especially careful attention. Jokes that sound nice when they come out of your mouth only rarely look as good on canvas. In addition, it is unrefined to make use of a gift one is richly endowed with in any but the most selective way. - Touching up blemishes looks messy. You should try to avoid this habit. I myself often need to remind myself of this. Self, hear and obey! Looking in the studio of the painter next to you, to steal thoughts or ideas that you can't think up yourself, is a rotten thing to do. No artist should have so little self-respect that they prefer a stupid theft to the noble confession that their knowledge has reached its limits. - It's best not to pester your former teachers with questions and invitations. Acting like that is weak and it only shows how embarrassed you are about the self-sufficiency you are supposed to have but don't. Teachers despise that."




JM Howey (b. 1973, lives and works in Brooklyn) received his MFA from Columbia University (2006) and his BFA from the School of the MFA, Boston (1999). Previous solo exhibitions include Bureau, NY; Taxter & Spengemann, NY; and Marginal Utility, Philadelphia. Group exhibitions include "Andrew Gbur, Jaya Howey, David Ratcliff" at Team Gallery, NY; "CK One Daily", Night Gallery, LA; and 'Besides, With, Against & Yet; Abstraction and the Ready-Made Gesture', The Kitchen, NY.




Installation photography: Vegard Kleven