Suspension

Shirley Kaneda Momentary Suspension 1999

“My practice is based on the idea of having multiple spaces within the same field, so it’s about challenging the idea of a unity or a whole, or consistency. I question the notion of consistency and why that is privileged. That is part of my work using or trying to achieve a kind of complexity in space. So, different forms don’t seem to exist in the same space… And then, of course, there are differences in term of the parts of the paintings, they are not only geometric forms, but also lines and organic areas… I would not say painterly, because I am not really a gestural painter. I paint for the most part with flat, smooth edges.” Shirley Kaneda in conversation with Olivier Gourvil, April 26, 2012.

One of the 1991 Neo-Abstractionists was Shirley Kaneda. Her paintings are mainly about discontinuity. She collages Modernist abstract forms and processes across a morphing Cubist space. By the turn of this century Kaneda had digitized these forms using computer programming to stretch and elongate her imagery.  – “Most of us will agree the old values that were taught to us no longer work, but you don’t have to throw the baby out with the bath water, we need to re-evaluate what works and what doesn’t and be able to explain why.” (Kaneda and Clarkson)   

“…everything can be authentic and inauthentic now because the magnitudes of our experiences have become so compounded that it’s difficult to draw the line between the real and the synthetic. How would you draw the line? There are definitely painters who take a consciously distanced view, and then there are those who still believe that they are making more authentic work because you can see the hand of the painter attempting to embody some meaning through materiality. Does that make it more authentic than my using tape to produce hard edges? I think those kinds of explanations are just not relevant to our experience of the world anymore.” Shirley Kaneda in conversation with David Clarkson, Bomb, April 1, 1995.

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