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Factory Fresh goes ‘Rotten’ with latest visual works

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Less than a month after opening, the East Williamsburg gallery Factory Fresh is living up to its promise for bringing in fresh new art.

In its new show, “Un Named Rottens,” opening June 28, artists Jeremiah Maddock, Daniel St. George and Beau Velasco bring their dizzying array of drawings and other intricate visual works made from found objects such as book covers and house paint and canvases found in dumpsters.

“I think everybody paints over everything now,” said Ali Ha, gallery director of East Williamsburg gallery Factory Fresh. “I’m glad you’re recycling for this show.”

Ha asked St. George, a Williamsburg resident with a studio in Long Island City, to do a solo show, but he preferred to bring in two other artists who he admired. Originally from Los Angeles, St. George is contributing work that is crudely autobiographical with underlying themes of his relationships with women and visions of an apocalyptic future. He narrates moments of his life utilizing transferred graphite on found paper with subtle black, white, and yellow colors, often interspersed with bold text from found poetry

“I’m never drawing on the paper directly or touching the paper physically that much,” St. George said.

St. George invited Jeremiah Maddock and Beau Velasco to join the show because he enjoyed their work and thought the artists could complement each other well. Maddock will be bringing 30 to 80 drawings to the show, which will have a clustery effect to the gallery, in contrast to the bold, wry advertising signs from Skewville currently on exhibit in Factory Fresh.

“If I’m not completely entertained by what’s going on in front of me at the moment, I’m not into it,” Maddock said.

From accidentally carving patters into his mother’s antique furniture in California to slicing open used books that he picks up outside used bookstores, Maddock has emerged as an exciting visual artist with a growing fan base. Ha describes his drawings as an “attempt to create the purest expression of existence, totally free from external conditioning and undefiled by compromise.” The drawings, which can take 20 to 30 hours to make, are filled with a mysterious hieroglyphic language that appears to be a bizarre combination between Aboriginal cave paintings and the icons of an iPhone.

Maddock, however, seems to take much pleasure going to The Strand to draw on used books while customers gawk at him.

“It’s fun being an exhibitionist, cutting off the book covers,” Maddock said. “You get the strangest looks from people going in and out of the book store.”

Velasco’s playful nature and musical background fit well with the other artists in the show. He came to New York from Australia to play with his band, The DeathSet, and worked as a tattoo artist in Harlem. Velasco paints “lots of dirty, funny pictures” on discarded records, canvasses, and other items he finds in dumpsters in Williamsburg.

“I like painting things that are really funny that speak to me more than trying to conceptualize an interesting art idea,” Velasco said. “That’s not my style.”

According to Velasco, his art is more popular than his music, especially in Australia, likely because he is no longer playing with his band there. For now, though, Velasco will focus on his paintings.

Un Named Rottens will be opening at Factory Fresh at 1053 Flushing Avenue on June 28 from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. and run until July 21. For more information, visit www.factoryfresh.net.

Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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