Cathedral – a basement installation by Aaron Beebe
March 20 – April 20, 1998
I never bothered to ask what had induced this skinny, pasty-faced white kid to take such an interest in the Arabic language that he would want to integrate bits of Arabic print into several of his paintings, or to play Arabic pop music (Al-Jazeera meets ‘Nsync) at a
gathering in his Tremont apartment of a New Year’s Eve. But it was the hook that first attracted me to his work. And it was the mystical ambiguity that kept me coming back.
He called the exhibition “White” with good reason. Virtually every piece is comprised of collaged photo, pencil marks, bits of print, strips of masking tape - you name it – all unified by the torn white sheeting that he used as his canvas, and by the white paint that covered – and in many cases obscured – most of the imagery he chose to affix to it.
His assembled imagery ranged from the sacred (angels) to the profane (porn). And maybe it was the calming unification of the whitewash that was the point of this work…where similarities out-did differences. Like bandages on Egyptian mummies. After thousands of years of obscurity under those white bandages, it all boils down to neither “good”
nor “evil”, but simply human.
Or maybe that wasn’t the point at all… what the hell do I know? - Mona Gazala Solymos