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The Radiant Future


The Radiant Future Donald Moffett With essays by Lisa Dent and Bill Horrigan and an interview with Donald Moffett by Michael Goodson

Canzani Center Gallery 2012


Produced in association with Donald Moffett’s The Radiant Future and Mr. Gay in the U.S.A. November 16, 2012–January 11, 2013 Canzani Center Gallery Columbus College of Art & Design Columbus, Ohio Director of Exhibitions: Michael Goodson Creative Director/Designer: Lindsay Kronmiller Editorial Director: Laura Bidwa Designer: Vince Smigiel (CCAD 2013) The Radiant Future premiered at the Marianne Boesky Gallery, February 25–April 7, 2012. Photographs of all works in The Radiant Future by Christopher Burke Studio. Images of all works in Mr. Gay in the U.S.A. courtesy of the Cartin Collection. ©2012 Columbus College of Art & Design, the authors, and the artist. All rights reserved. No part of the publication may be reproduced or otherwise transmitted in any form by any means electronic or otherwise without written permission from Columbus College of Art & Design, 60 Cleveland Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43215. Support for this exhibition and publication provided by

COVER IMAGE: Lot 080711 (the radiant future), detail, 2011; Oil on linen with wood panel support, concrete mixer, driftwood, wire, hardware; 104 x 91 x 45 inches PAGE viii-1 IMAGE: Donald Moffett, The Radiant Future, installation view Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York, NY


Contents vii Acknowledgments 02 DM, or, The Complications Bill Horrigan

06 An Interview with Donald Moffett

Michael Goodson

12 Equal Distribution

Lisa Dent

19 The Radiant Future

selected exhibition images

67 Mr. Gay in the U.S.A. selected exhibition images


Acknowledgments Special thanks for the tireless efforts and support of Veronica Levitt and the entire staff of Marianne Boesky Gallery; Bridget and Patrick Wade; Lora Reynolds and Quincy Lee; Amy and John Jacobsson; Rebecca Camacho and the entire staff of Anthony Meier Fine Arts; and Jaclyn Little. —Michael Goodson The Radiant Future would not have been possible without the elegant and talented crew in my studio: Gwendolyn Skaggs, Shaun Krupa, and Dante Furioso. Also, Dan Krupin was integral to the making of the show. I am indebted to them all. —Donald Moffett

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DM, or, The Complications Bill Horrigan

“Impatience led to our expulsion from paradise,and impatience stops us returning.” —Franz Kafka Pursue Donald Moffett within the Museum of Modern Art’s exhibitions database, and you find him within their collection five times over as he was laboring between 1987 and 2002. At his earliest, he’s the force behind the AIDS activist graphic He Kills Me, a black and orange bull’s-eye set to the left of an image of dear leader Ronald Reagan (at the base of whose mug shot rests the multiple’s clarifying title), a piece produced just before Moffett would align himself with ACT UP and its visual propaganda arm Gran Fury (1989–1995). Next retrieved from the MoMA vault is the film poster he and his design partner at Bureau (1989–2001), Marlene McCarty, produced for the 1992 film Swoon, a detachedly delirious retelling of the 1920s Leopold and Loeb proto-queer homicidal crime as channeled by one of Moffett and McCarty’s Gran Fury collaborators, the director Tom Kalin. Back on 53rd Street [at MoMA], there’s a nine-year leap to 2001, from which dates Book of Days, an entirely different proposition: four modestly scaled works on paper across which an oil and enamel simulation of a grid of twine hangs limply. Moffett is last glimpsed within MoMA’s holdings the following year with two drawings, Model #1 and Model #2, each a life-sketch in pencil on sketchpad paper of a recumbent penis. These latter three works by Moffett the painter reside in the museum’s department of drawings

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(part of its bequest from the Judith Rothschild Foundation Contemporary Drawings Collection), while the former are housed within its architecture and design collection. I once wrote in reference to Andy Warhol that if only a single work by him were to survive—in his case, the 1966 double-screen projection Outer and Inner Space—one could extract from or detect within it, DNA-style, a considerable amount of speculative information about the themes and preoccupations coursing through his entire body of work (e.g., seriality, repetition, expanded portraiture, and technological innovation). A similar impulse occurred to me while looking at Donald Moffett’s presence within MoMA’s collection; that is, could these five artifacts withstand such an analysis, which must inevitably conclude that the works are paradoxically both ”typical” and “exceptional”? For sure, the impulse to analyze in this way can be a yawning idleness, a speculator’s or an auctioneer’s first resort; and yet a contemporary object is invited into an institution’s inventory not simply for its apparently intrinsic values, nor for the novelty of its materials, nor for the institution’s need to thwart the desires of competitors wishing they could stake a prior claim on it for themselves to burnish their own vanity. In execution, an institution’s acquisition strategies are seldom unified (the arc of museum justice is long…sometimes bending straight, sometimes bending bent) and, thus, yield more diverse and useful conclusions than might at first be apparent. With that in mind, and despite Moffett’s painting achievements over the past twenty-five years looming as much more alchemically virile than MoMA’s modest trove would indicate, it’s worth making another pass at my Warholian equivalence test, adjusted for the Moffett standard. Certainly, for example, He Kills Me portends the bracingly confrontational ambiguity of Moffett’s subsequent work (his “sculptural” “paintings”), just as its unfussy, if elegant, tactility as a political instrument affirms him as

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an artist training one eye on a social order that’s gone off compass. The Swoon movie poster does that, too, created to promote and to sell a re-decanted lyrically historic queerness as the new abnormal (get used to it).* The anatomical studies offered in Model #1 and Model #2 are more glancingly enlisted in that agenda, leaping backward as well to the artist’s academic formation in biology (his background degree), while Book of Days, single-handedly among the MoMA holdings, underscores an avowal Moffett made to Douglas Crimp in a 2011 conversation: “I complicate painting.” Drawing gets complicated, too, as demonstrated in a group of works outside the MoMA collection. Produced in 1997 collaboratively with Robert Beck (likewise an ACT UP veteran), but only exhibited and titled in 2010 (by which date Mr. Beck had changed his name to Robert Buck), Range is a group of twenty works on paper, each a page torn from a sketchpad through which a bullet from Beck’s gun had passed. Moffett’s mediation

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*And, besides, as Moffett remarked in a 1994 interview he and Marlene McCarty gave to Ellen Lupton in the context of their graphic design practice: “Film is the most potent art form today; that’s obvious.” Among Bureau’s other film work were the posters and/or title sequences for Mary Harron’s American Psycho (2000) and I Shot Andy Warhol (1996), Ang Lee’s The Ice Storm (1997), Cindy Sherman’s Office Killer (1997), Todd Haynes’s Safe (1995) and Velvet Goldmine (1998), and Tom Kalin’s Geoffrey Beene 30 (1993).

cinema-screen-proportioned projection of Yves Klein blue. Moffett’s response to Jarman’s death-bed testament has been generally seen as, in its quietism and sobriety, an emotional recalibration of his involvement in ACT UP and Gran Fury’s more rambunctious and angry provocations (this in the context of AIDS having been, by 1997, “cured”), as well as (once again secularly defaulting into contemporary art trafficking) a follow-up to his own 1996 exhibition of monochromatic works entitled A Report on Painting.

Moffett’s offhanded comment above, expressed over twenty-two years ago, possibly (possibly) overstates what may or may not be his current conviction in this matter. That said, at least six of his major undertakings as a visual artist depend vitally on his investment in audio-visual forms. His 1997 photo series, Blue, consisting of mostly unclouded views of the sky over New York City, was rationalized by British filmmaker Derek Jarman’s magisterial 1993 Blue. Made after Jarman had lost his sight from HIV complications, Blue is a featurelength monologue set against an unwavering,

In five additional exhibition projects between 2001 and 2006, Moffett trained evanescent video images and/or sounds onto his own painted canvas surfaces (some oil and enamel on linen, some oil and alkyd on linen). The justly most celebrated of these is 2001’s What Barbara Jordan Wore, honoring the irreplaceable African-American U.S. Congresswoman of Moffett’s home state of Texas; the others are 2003’s The Extravagant Vein, 2004’s D.C., 2004’s Paintings from a Hole, and 2006’s Impeach, the last an audioonly piece.


centers on the gunpowder-brushed holes. Using only graphite and fudge, he’s framed each open wound with cryptically precise adornment: an enticement to and from the void, or else the emblemizing of a masculine American will to armed force (consider each of the twenty images as a proposed design for a merit badge). The eighteen pencil drawings in Moffett’s 2001 Mr. Gay in the U.S.A. were generated as he sat in a Virginia courtroom observing the sentencing of Ronald Gay (a man so tormented by the mockery his surname invited that he randomly shot up a gay bar, killing one and wounding others), but rather than producing the form of representational sketches once conventional among court procedures (prevideo watchfulness), Moffett recorded different, fragmented views—some half-gestured portraits, some architectural details, and written notes both to himself (“turquoise tattoo”) and of presumably overheard testimony (“Homos eat sperm like peanut butter”). Deviance and disorder (American and other, sexual and other, his own and ours) are no less complicated than painting, and in triangulating among them, Moffett’s work yields one of its manifest benefits—un bien fait, a good act. Temperamentally, his instinct to combine and cross-reference is bound up with a certain impatience, possibly sarcastic, definitely risky, a species of the impatience Moffett finds with the act of painting itself. If, for example, one of the necessary preconditions for producing a painting is having to reckon with a wall on which it might hang, then it’s his pleasure to produce a painting opting to view the wall with neglect or derision—a painting acknowledging multiple sides rather than a flat-facing surface—a painting vexing to the nerves of conservators thanks to its constituent materials—a painting in full embrace of a precisely fine crankiness of affect. This is work that exposes the logic of its own armature (both technical and personal) and allows for the measure of its inclusive democratic weight. “As long as I breathe I shall fight for the future, that radiant future, in which man, strong and beautiful, will become master of the drifting stream of his history and will direct it towards the boundless horizons of beauty, joy, and happiness!” —Leon Trotsky

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An Interview with Donald Moffett Michael Goodson Director of Exhibitions

In late February of this year I was in New York for my first visit back, having moved to Columbus, Ohio, in August. Although I never research what’s going on in the galleries before making a trip anywhere (which is to say that I never follow through on my intent to research what’s going on in the galleries), I knew that I really should “mean business” on this, my first trip back to the city that had been, and in moments still felt like, home. The Whitney Biennial was up, I knew, as was the New Museum’s triennial, The Unforgivables, which I had heard was very good. I stopped in to see my old colleagues at James Cohan Gallery within hours of landing. My friend and collaborator Robert Attanasio immediately wrote on a sticky note “Moffett—Radiant Future@Boesky.” I had loved Donald Moffett’s previous show at Marianne Boesky in Chelsea, as well as his collaborative show with Robert Beck at the gallery’s uptown location. My wife and I walked over to 24th Street. I was, as it turned out, unprepared for the heft and extravagance of The Radiant Future. As we walked through the door the smell of paint hit us with its odd ability to both comfort and distress. It was the kind of smell that only paintings inches deep with the lipid richness of pure, uncut oil paint can produce. My wife turned to me and said, “Smells like a painting show.” Indeed.

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I visited that show three more times while in the city for those four days and once again on a trip back to New York in April. On Monday, April 9, I sent an email to the Marianne Boesky Gallery asking about the possibility of bringing the show in its entirety to Columbus. This conversation with Donald Moffett took place five months later. Your retrospective, The Extravagant Vein, which was curated by Valerie Cassel Oliver and initially organized by the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, has just ended its third and last iteration at the Andy Warhol Museum this month. Given this, it strikes me as an interesting time to talk about the body of work that followed the last chapter of the retrospective and that, in part, comprised your solo exhibition at Marianne Boesky last spring— The Radiant Future. In two talks that you gave in conjunction with The Extravagant Vein—at the Tang Museum, the retrospective’s second stop, and at the Warhol Museum— you devoted a significant portion of the discussion and imagery to The Radiant Future. What are your thoughts on The Radiant Future’s relationship to The Extravagant Vein? The Extravagant Vein was a twenty-year survey, and a survey is akin to illegal dredging of the ocean floor—at night. Everything is crudely brought up from the deep—the good, the bad, the ugly. It is all disturbed and picked over and judged to be worthy of inclusion, or not. But unlike dredging, this process is not quick. Its damage is not done in an instant. A survey like this one takes years to organize, produce, and finish. Sometimes artists do not survive this process well. I’m not sure I have. It’s too early to know. But one thing I realized about halfway through the six (!) years that it took to do the survey was that I had to simultaneously continue moving forward in the private space of my studio—which stands in for my

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head. I had to keep that place dredge-free, judgment-free, and experimental. The Radiant Future was mounted in New York during The Extravagant Vein’s tour. It is the result of my conscious effort to NOT sacrifice my ongoing and future creative spunk to the exposition of my creative past. With regard to The Radiant Future, you’ve spoken of texture and weight being a primary concern in what I perceive as an ongoing reconsideration and dismantling of our ideas of what a formal painting can be—or really what the act of painting itself can be. This has been a constant in your studio practice. The wall, however, also seems to be of particular concern in The Radiant Future. How does the wall intercede with issues of texture and weight? What were your ideas regarding the way with which it was to be dealt? And what of balance, as that is really the third in the trinity of plastic concerns that seems to envelope those works?The way I spoke about texture and weight for The Radiant Future was through the following short (and true) narrative used in the press release: “A little domestic tragedy happened last winter during a snowstorm. The largest tree on the block, an old Bradford pear, fell into the street in front of our house. It was heavy and shocking to see splayed out horizontally, ruined and dying at the foot of the stoop. The city sent out a crew of skilled arborists to chainsaw and chip it into manageable remains to discard or recycle. This was all an event that drew the curiosity of neighbors. There was an intensity in their observation that was instructive. People asked the arborists if they could take parts of the tree. I asked one man who was dragging off a big log if he had a fireplace. He said, “No, I don’t. It is the texture and the weight that I want.” And he staggered off with what he missed. I know what he means. Texture and weight. Neither play a part of any consequence in our new digitized lives. Yes, texture and weight.” I never really think about a tree’s weight. A leaf is so light, and a tree’s

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posture is so upright and supple. A tree is see-through against the sky. But when a tree crushes a couple of cars in your front yard, its weight comes to mind. I never think about the weight of other people’s paintings. I do think about the weight of mine. There is so much paint on them (usually) that the weight of the paint itself becomes an issue in moving them around the studio or out the door. With the contraptions, I compound this physicality by a significant factor—up to, say, a factor of ten, as in the case of the large blocks of concrete, which weigh about 1200 pounds each. The weight was important, as the blocks became the very root of each piece. There was an impulse for stability—not an easy thing to control, ever! I don’t know what to say about balance in The Radiant Future. It is invisible, but very tangible. We, meaning my crew and I, achieved it in a number of instances. It took work. I don’t know why I presented us with these problems to solve. We are not engineers. Balance is tricky. I recently heard Steven Madoff speak about the use and perception of space. It was a careening talk on the historical perception of space that intermittently touched on the use of space in its relationship to formal art and on an artist’s, curator’s, or institution’s responsibility in considering space in this context. Your use of space, especially given the presence of the “contraptions” in The Radiant Future, seems very, very considered. What was the process of weighing the objecthood of those works? Is there a set vocabulary of “thingness” at play in your object decisions—a vocabulary of tone or of the object’s perceived identity given its previous context? Paintings are generally two-dimensional with perhaps the illusion of space held on their two-dimensional surface. My paintings are three-dimensional, and the expression of those dimensions is real from the outermost point of the extruded paint to the back of the panel exposed by the drilling. This is usually about a three-inch depth—a lot for a painting (maybe), but not much in the scheme of things, in the world.

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[As a result,] the wall started to bug me, to fail me. We were perfectly penetrating the painting, but the wall was stopping the view, as well as the framing of the space opened up by the drilling. As my frustration grew, it seemed natural to move away from the thing that was frustrating me. I picked the painting up and moved it off the wall. I liked that. That’s all I wanted to do, but I couldn’t very well continue holding it for the rest of time. I needed something to hold it for me. As I have said before, anything could have been brought into service to hold the painting—a stick, a bucket, a pipe, a donkey—but we went a little crazy. We used all those things and then decided to let even more unlikely things hold the work. Things that through the generosity of the universe came into sight at that exact time. That’s how we got to the contraptions. They showed up. They were strong. They abandoned their previous jobs for this one. We didn’t ask any questions. The last show at Boesky before The Radiant Future consisted largely of paintings with relatively little paint on them. Instead, the picture plane was considered in terms of other, ostensibly more codified, accoutrement— stitching, embroidery, and zippers—indicators of dress and undress. What was the process like of going from relatively little painting to works that are ensconced in the thick and robust application of paint? Was it satisfying to move into a realm where you could really consider the richness and fat of oil paint? Was it nourishing or, conversely, was it dyspeptic at times? The previous show you are referring to was called Fleisch, which is German for “flesh.” A clarification around chronology can answer, in part, your “dyspeptic” question, even though I’d never thought of it that way. The extruded-paint paintings that pile oil on linen in deep and fat and extravagant ways pre-date and post-date the Fleisch works. So yes, at least for the time I focused on Fleisch, I withheld the nourishment of paint from the panel. I wanted to eliminate paint from the surface of the painting except in the most stringent kind of way.

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Those paintings grew out of the nightmarish news event called “the Kassel Cannibal”. A man had posted a personal ad on a gay website for a volunteer that he could butcher. He lived in Kassel, Germany. He received a reply, a willing partner. The two of them met. In a profoundly haunting duet that involved the execution of the plan, starting with the severing, sautéing, and eating of the volunteer’s penis, they both sat at the kitchen table and complained of its toughness. The ritualized meal proceeded to its hideous conclusion with the complete butchering of the dinner guest. So yes, I lost my appetite for a lot (of anything) and concentrated on just a little (of something). Fleisch was about starvation, as was the slaughter. It was about a starved psyche and a ravaging, hungry heart. What are you working on now, post–Radiant Future and, for that matter, post–Extravagant Vein? More of the same. Too much of this—for a while. Too little of that—for a while. Always trying to keep those troubles in check, with one eye on the news and one eye on the work.

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Lot 042010, Lot 010511 (one’s own), 2012; Oil on linen with wood panel support, rebar, concrete statuary, log pedestal, ratchet straps, hardware; 103 x 73 x 30 inches


Equal Distribution Lisa Dent

Sitting atop four squarely cut logs bound together with ratchet straps is a cast figure of a young woman. Her long skirt and cape, held down by her hands, cascade on either side of her. Smooth, shoulder-length hair is held back by a small bow. Her puffed sleeves and bodice make the figure reminiscent of Snow White. She is beautiful and graceful, albeit with a twist. Connected to her is a long wire—rebar—inserted into her mouth and exiting at the back of her neck. The rebar, which is curved at the ends, holds two of Donald Moffett’s recent oil paintings; Lot 042010 (2012) and Lot 010511 (2012). The paintings dangle from seemingly uncomfortable points. The figure, while prominent and central, serves a utilitarian purpose. The rebar holds the paintings, but clog her mouth and pierce her spine, both silencing and paralyzing her. Snow White is frozen in the forest. Too flowery a reading? Perhaps it is, for the work of an artist known for his deep engagement in political activism. As members of Gran Fury in 1980s New York City, Moffett and his friends produced some of the most iconic images of the fight against AIDS. One of their most well-known signs included same-sex couples kissing below the tagline “Kissing doesn’t kill: Greed and indifference do”. Brilliantly combining the look of late-80s Benetton ads with advocacy for AIDS education, Gran Fury’s work had an incredible impact on downtown New York’s fight against ignorance and capitalist greed—an impact that quickly spread. The street marches and rallies they helped to organize were trying to ground us in the realities of our time, not remove us to a world of fantasy.

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In the 1990s, Moffett spent several years as the co-owner of a small graphic design firm, Bureau, that divided its time between commercial clients and projects for other activists. He continued with his own studio practice, but not without finding himself frustrated by the insular nature of the art world. Moffett, along with many artists who could describe their identity as something other than heterosexual, male, and Caucasian, found the personal and the political intertwined and impossible to separate in any discussion of their work. Attempts to disconnect one’s practice from individual and cultural contexts would be seen as an acceptance of uptown, consumerist, uninformed ideologies. Creating a bridge between imagination and reality while family and friends were dying was more than some artists could bear. Moffett’s work has been most often defined by a consistent consideration of the practice of painting. Working initially on traditionally stretched canvas, in the 1990s he began to incorporate strategies to remove painting’s reliance on those materials and structures, slowly taking his paintings away from the wall itself. His most recent technique for applying paint came from learning to make complicated desserts at a local culinary school. Using pastry bags to gently apply oil paint in strips across a panel, creating what appears to be a fluffy surface, has become central to Moffett’s process. Each panel also has openings, holes that allow one to see straight through, which become surrounded by the cascading drips of paint. Moffett’s skill at creating the look of softness, however, doesn’t lead me away from baser readings: fluffers, the crew members hired to keep men sexually aroused during the making of a porn film. It’s the holes. In this respect, using technical skill to create a semiotic contradiction and tension, Moffett’s art is highly successful. He manages to move between references to a stuffed animal and references to someone working in the porn industry. Is it wrong for me to connect AIDS activism to pornography? Possibly, for surely love for friends and family of the afflicted was at the heart

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Lot 112411 (petunia), detail, 2011–2012; Oil on linen with wood panel support, concrete statuary, lamp, concrete block pedestal; 97 x 17 x 47 inches

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of the gay rights movement, not sex. Moffett seems to be in a similar pickle. He is who he was as much as who he seems to want to become—an activist ready to cause chaos alongside one with a deep knowledge and appreciation for classical technique and balanced composition. Moffett attaches his oil paintings to found and manipulated objects. He doesn’t lean, stretch, or stick the painted panels to the surfaces. Whether hung or mounted, they are always attached with balance and precision, never tilted or bent away from a 90-degree angle to the floor. Unlike a Robert Rauschenberg combine, each piece is ordered and arranged in a clean and orderly fashion with care and respect, elevated to a place of honor. Any curves, angles, and dents are carefully placed beside, below, or around the paintings. Behind Lot 112411 (2012), for instance, is a figure of a man leaning against a pole with his eyes slightly shut and tongue hanging out. In his hand he holds a bottle, the reason for his current state. Stability and centeredness are around him, from the bottom of the steps to the top of the pole, but the figure itself falls loosely against the structure. It is as if the steadied order were too much to bear. The wood and metal used in other works have rusted, rugged surfaces that give them a Western feel. Lot 020412 (2012), in particular, looks as though it could be placed on one of hundreds of fence posts surrounding a herd of cattle. Then there is the aforementioned ratchet strap beneath Snow White. It is as if the four logs have traveled on the interstate and come straight off the back of a pickup truck. These parts seem to be remnants of Moffett’s time in Texas, when he was discovering himself as an artist. He has previously referenced his home state. In his three-channel video projection What Barbara Jordan Wore (2001–2002), Moffett used footage from the Texas congresswoman’s speech during Richard Nixon’s impeachment. As Jordan describes her commitment to the Constitution and her personal journey of discovery, Moffett reminds us that she is also a good, Southern woman. Although Jordan was very different from her

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colleagues and far away from home, it was known that she never made that an excuse to show up improperly dressed. Jordan connected her history with her responsibilities of the moment and gave each aspect equal importance. Moffett wants to come close to this balance. There have been few paintings until now that incorporate any part of his Texas history. More importantly, Moffett combines the rustic components with the monochromatic painted panels. His work is classically composed with a variety of forms unified by pattern, color, and rhythm. No element overpowers another. Instead, each supports and enhances the rest. Moffett’s current practice presents a formal dichotomy veiled and shown as harmony, distributing each element with respect for the other. His new works are presentable, just as Jordan was each time she showed up to speak in Washington. Moffett prefers to define his current works as paintings. In this way I feel a kinship with the artist. When I was younger, I often wished for an easy answer to the question, “What do you do?” Oh, to be a doctor, lawyer, writer, or anything with a one-word description. I wrote, sang, photographed, danced, ran, assisted, volunteered, and organized. Now I write, curate, counsel, and teach. An occasional run is thrown in when the weather cooperates. I imagine that finding a simple definition for what I do would be cathartic. By placing his work within a particular medium, Moffett may be hoping to no longer have to answer the questions “Are these paintings or sculptures?” and “What do you do?”. Each aspect of his interests, skills, and ideas is presented with equal distribution. He can move on to the more important process of discovery.

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The Radiant Future


Lot 010212 (the double hazard) 2011; Oil on linen with wood panel support, concrete statuary, wood timbers, acrylic paint on burlap, gaffers tape, wire, steel I beam, hardware; 69 x 87 x 57 inches

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Lot 010212 (the double hazard), detail

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Lot 080711 (the radiant future) 2011; Oil on linen with wood panel support, concrete mixer, driftwood, wire, hardware; 104 x 91 x 45 inches

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Lot 080711 (the radiant future), detail

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Lot 020212 (the good hole) 2012; Oil on linen with wood panel support with cast iron flanges, common black pipe, hardware; 21 x 21 x 23 inches

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Lot 020212 (the good hole)

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Lot 041410.12 (random F) 2012; Oil on linen with wood panel support, timbers, galvanized pipe, galvanized buckets, rebar, concrete, hardware; 63½ x 62 x 12 inches

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Lot 041410.12 (random F), detail

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Lot 112411 (petunia) 2011–2012; Oil on linen with wood panel support, concrete statuary, lamp, concrete block pedestal, hardware; 97 x 17 x 47 inches

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Lot 112411 (petunia), details (and previous pages)

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Lot 032211 (the crimson cut) 2011; Oil on linen with wood panel support, cast iron base, electric motor, common black pipe, hardware; 126 x 29 x 20 inches (installation view in artist’s studio) 42


Lot 032211 (the crimson cut), detail

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Lot 041212 (cadmium comfort) 2012; Oil on linen with wood panel support with cast iron flanges, common black pipe, hardware; 17 x 17 x 14½ inches

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Lot 041212 (cadmium comfort)

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Lot 042010, Lot 010511 (one’s own) 2012; Oil on linen with wood panel support, rebar, concrete statuary, timbers, ratchet straps, hardware; 103 x 73 x 30 inches

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Lot 010511 (one’s own), detail

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Lot 042010 (one’s own), detail

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Lot 050411 (crimson shot) 2011; Oil on linen with wood panel support; 31 x 25 x 2½ inches

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Lot 040111, Lot 040311 (the floating reminders) 2011; Oil on linen with wood panel support, driftwood, concrete block, ratchet straps, hardware; 106 x 24 x 24 inches (installation view in artist’s studio)

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Lot 040111, Lot 040311 (the floating reminders), detail

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Lot 020412 (port) 2012; Oil on linen with wood panel support, driftwood, concrete block, hardware; 116 x 25 x 29 inches 60


Lot 122611 (the extended hole) 2011; Oil on linen with wood panel support with cast iron flanges, common black pipe, hardware; 17 x 17 x 16 inches

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Lot 122611 (the extended hole)

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Mr. Gay in the U.S.A. Ronald Gay, a Vietnam veteran who suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, resented the homosexual community for “changing the definition” of his last name from happy to homosexual. Describing himself as a Christian soldier, Gay entered the Backstreet Cafe, a busy gay bar in Roanoke, Virginia, on Friday, September 22, 2000, and opened fire on the crowd, wounding six and killing one. Quickly apprehended, Gay later pled guilty to one count of first-degree murder, six counts of aggravated malicious wounding, and seven firearms charges. Donald Moffett sat in the courtroom audience for Ronald Gay’s sentencing on July 23, 2001. The result of this trip is a group of eighteen drawings, sixteen double-page spreads and two single pages, sparse in form yet heavy in content. The imagery is fairly wide open, single graphite forms in the center of a white page. The paper is neither transparent nor opaque and, as most pages were drawn on both sides, many drawings feature a ghost image showing through from the backside. Completing each image on site, in rapid succession, Moffett succeeds in an honest spontaneity. The drawings echo the present. They have a sense of urgency indicative not only of the environment in which they were drawn but also of the absurd tragedy that inspired them. Mr. Gay in the U.S.A, 2001; Graphite on paper, linen tape; 16 drawings, 11 x 17 inches each; 2 drawings, 11 x 8½ inches each

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The Radiant Future Exhibition Catalog  

Donald Moffett's The Radiant Future Fall 2012 Exhitbition Catalog Nov 16, 2012–Jan11, 2013 CCAD Canzani Center Gallery

The Radiant Future Exhibition Catalog  

Donald Moffett's The Radiant Future Fall 2012 Exhitbition Catalog Nov 16, 2012–Jan11, 2013 CCAD Canzani Center Gallery

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