My paintings are an effort to reflect a state of uncertainty, one that is the natural product of the times in which we live, but also, one produced by the cognitive processes of perception and memory. These aspects of the mind are fragmentary and subjective and inspire the spatial ambiguity and other formal disruptions in my work. Attractive colors and patterns create semi-ironic moments of optimism in the midst of existential voids.
There are often references to circuitry, which are used primarily to symbolize information to which we have no access. I see ultimate truths as unknowable and hope to mirror our state of not knowing. On a poetic level, I hope my work evokes remnants of a future digital past. I embrace open-endedness and a degree of absurdity in my work, as they echo the world around us.
No Us, the title of the current series, is a provocative and subjective effort to address the artist/viewer relationship, and, by extension, elusive ruminations on the self. If meaning in art is projected, not inherent, then importance is placed on the experience and understanding (and emotions) of the viewer. I hope there will be an awareness of this on the part of the viewer that might facilitate a look inward. Ultimately, I want to make work that questions the nature of reality, both internal and external. I want to make work that functions at, or beyond, the limits of my own understanding.
Mark Keffer, 2020