los-angeles

Nayland Blake

Richard Kuhlenschmidt Gallery

This show consisted of six artworks, all 1989, and functioned as a philosophical game of three against three: transcendent words versus sinister objects. At the same time, it resembled a lesson plan, with viewers as the submissive pupils, and the artist as the subversive instructor.

The word team begins with lesson one, Schatzman Hallucination Guide. Written in ink on a blackboard is the following: “Construct a sentence to render the event in words. Withdraw consciousness from the event. Deny the previous steps, the next steps, and the denials. Change the subject, verb or object of the sentence and form a new positive sentence. Picture the new sentence with an image. Project the image into perceptual space.” This is followed by lesson two, in smaller type: Edgar Allan Poe’s short story Berenice, printed on four blackboards, two blocks of text per board. The story, which anchors Blake’s work

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