This past Tuesday I had the privilege to see Jonathan Faber’s solo exhibition at the Big Medium Gallery in Austin. Before the show, I did not research or view the works previously, so that I could go in with an open mind, no expectations or biases. Walking in I was pleased to see that both the paintings and drawings were not accompanied by titles or descriptions, I find them to be distracting and take away from the pure connection with each work. It allowed for an uninterrupted experience between the viewer and painting, leaving it free to interpretation. As I looked around I noticed some of the paintings were placed next to small drawings while others stood alone uninfluenced by a drawing. Some serving as preliminary ideas that later expanded into large paintings thus, “working hand in hand influencing one another” as said by Faber.
As the visit went on, Faber got to explain some background information of a few of the works along with his intent overall. The paintings were drawn from past experiences and domestic settings particular to him such as places he has lived and games he used to and also continue to play. The use of tape in each painting stuck out to me the most in two of his works in particular, Relic Remix, 2015, oil on canvas and Internal Exile, 2016, pastel on paper . The tape and its removal was meant to serve as vocabulary for the piece contributing to this sense of an internal dialogue. He did not want it to merely just a part of the construction but an “active participant” wanting it to both distance you and bring you in. Faber presented us with an exhibition free for interpretation, based on uninterrupted experience creating as he said,”visual reference between memory and internal dialogue”.