Helen Bur, Brian Beyung, Pablo Merchante, Zane Prater, Axel Void
3 x 10 m
The Others was produced as a cooperative work within twenty-four hours in 2019. Yet the painting looks neither fragmented nor collaged. This photorealistic work, executed in rough brushwork, conveys rather the appearance of a self-contained snapshot. Its open ends lie in its content. Something about it seems uncanny. There are people on a bed in a chaotic-looking room. The red-infused coloration permits bloody, violent ideas, but the action is naturally frozen and remains enigmatic for all the familial intimacy. The painting is based on a photograph published in the book Fruit Tramps: A Family of Migrant Farmworkers by the American photojournalist Herman LeRoy Emmet, which was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize in 1990. It is about migrant workers on the margins of American society. In The Others, the artist involved draw parallels to their own, often-nomadic lifestyle. It raises the questions what “conventional” and “unconventional” are, and who defines them as such. Are we the uncanny-seeming “others”? And for whom?