“Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And if you gaze long enough into the abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.”-Friedrich Nietzsche
“The Artist must bow to the monster of his own imagination.” -Richard Wright
“Fantasy, abandoned by reason, produces impossible monsters; united with it, she is the mother of the arts and the origin of marvels.” - Francisco de Goya
“I don’t know why people expect art to make sense. They accept the fact that life doesn’t make sense.”- David Lynch
“Om nom nom nom.”- Cookie Monster
Much like Shelley’s monster in Frankenstein, this class will be an amalgam of parts. Each week will be based around a theme relating to the “monstrous.” Students will be given weekly media assignments which will combine the reading of seminal essays, literature, and critical theory with watching video and tv clips, or listening to music. Students will be asked to come prepared with 3 questions from the assignments each week. We will then have short discussions and thematic slide lectures to prepare for the bi-weekly painting prompt that will delve into the connections between mark making, color choice, and subject matter. Students will be responsible for creating their own simple reference material for each theme/prompt, which we will resolve, broaden, and unify. There will be one short presentation and one short paper. Most of the class time will be set aside for students to work on their paintings and for one-on-one feedback. We will have short group and individual critiques throughout the session.
Scott Isenbarger is a painter that lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. He was born in Indiana and later attended Indiana University in Bloomington. While there, he earned both his BA in English, BFA in Painting, and received the Harry Engels Scholarship for Painting. He then attended the San Francisco Art Institute where he earned his MFA and was awarded the SFAI Presidential Fellowship. He has exhibited in museums and galleries nationally and his work is held in several private collections.
Isenbarger’s paintings can be characterized by their fusion of classical figuration and surrealist abstraction. Enigmatic compositions utilize archetypal humans and animals within familiar yet otherworldly spaces. He employs parody and satire with strong sugary colors to work as a foil against the recurring themes of misguided masculinity and apathy. Often implicating himself in the scenario, he both questions his place in art history and identifies as an active participant. Besides an interest in a “masculine archetype,” he is more widely interested in spaces of the unconscious, dream spaces, liminal spaces, and the characters that reside therein. Furthermore, he is intrigued by how these personal mythologies inform and affect identity.View Gallery »