'Shooting The Breeze' was a four day long exhibition consisting of a series of anti-craft and lo-fi works created by several artists including Michael Aitken, Fiona McKillop and Richard Proffitt. I was only made aware of this exhibition's existence by walking past it on the day of it's opening. I wondered in not knowing anything about it and was instantly struck by a familiar style. That style being Richard Proffitt's series of photocopies of Americana, which includes his love for Spaghetti Westerns and Elvis Presley. This piece was entitled 'Paracurricular Activity' Photocopies 2007.
I was first conscious of Proffitt's work when I attended one of his talks at the Blue Coat and on first impressions I was lost and had no connection. I was left cold and confused about his reference points as they were about mythologies and Sci Fi. I then volunteered at A Foundation's 'Wrong Love' one night only exhibition and was converted. He had created this massive American Idian tipi which diminated the large warehouse space that is the A Foundation. It was created out of cardboard and was ment to be a place of interacting and discovery of the work. It's been one of my personal favourite works I've seen this year.
Due to 'Shooting The Breeze's' space though it forced Proffitt to return to more modest sized pieces. Whilst looking at his 'Paracurricular Activity' it made me think of my own work and how I could possibly integrate popular iconography and create personal reference points with the characters and stories I'm srtarting to build. My work too depicts Americana but it's the mundane and pedestrian America rahter than the mid 20th century modern gods of Elvis and Cowboys.
The other Richard Proffitt work that struck me was his 'Louisiana Blues, Anywhere'. My immediate reference was the film 'Mad Max' as it looked like an abandoned mothercycle lost to the ghost desserts. The whole exhition had a nostalgic dessert punk feel, which was carried on by Michael Aitkin's works. 'Ideas' was a perfect back drop to Proffitt's 'Louisiana Blues, Anywhere' piece as the materials shared a similar feel of aftermath. They both shared the imfluences and uninspired false-idolscapes, TV, and teen dreams, examining the rituals of the bedroom.