Searched Hard For You And Your Special Ways is a theatrically staged ‘studio’, full of paintings [many unfinished or failed] and replete with studio detritus: the cryptic scribbles, encrusted brushes and blunted knives of the meatspace artist. The paintings are of abstract bronze sculptures from the early 1980s by Markus Lüppertz. Actually, they are paintings of two-dimensional reproductions of abstract bronze sculptures. Which is to say, they are simulacra of simulacra - likenesses of likenesses - a manifestation of that Art Brut sense of depicting figures
Searched Hard For You And Your Special Ways is a work about tensions; visual tensions between sculpture/ painting/ photography and representation, tensions between appropriation, authorship and meaning, neurotic tensions of obsession and work – adoration and fandom. Can fandom be a radical site for participation in culture? Whether making or collecting memorabilia, writing fan fiction, or uploading their drivel to youtube, fans become creators as much as consumers of culture. With appropriation art in the 1980s, that postmodern distant criticality with the artist was crucial. In fan-art that critical distance is removed, and in its place is adoration. In a roundabout way, the lived experience of fandom comes back to questions of authorship, collectivity and information, and our place in the hierarchy of cultural production.