Lucas Blalock, Paul Branca, Devon Costello, Harald Thys and Jos de Gruyter, Sanya Kantarovsky, David Robbins

"Archived: Last Laugh"

September 15 - October 27, 2012

Last Laugh. A joke is all about the timing.
Carol Burnett described comedy as Tragedy plus Time.
Simon Critchley traced humor out to the tune of melancholia with dark results.

They turned it into an equation, middle larded with silence.
I am interested in comic timing and gestures stretched out like taffy. a flabby, bulbous pause.

William Carlos Williams called it the variable foot.
Victor Borge called this simply the extended beat.
Mary Douglas thought the joke played on form, bringing together disparate elements as a way to reveal anew.
Henri Bergson thought that humor was the mechanical encrusted on something living – slowly pulling it down and a laugh was horror at this incongruity – a last ditch effort to distance ourself.
Bertolt Brecht thought you had not yet heard the bad news.

Over-theorizing humor threatens to squash what it can do and a nice long gulp of air may help. I am interested in how stopping just short and stretching out the delay can be a strategy for a visual artist. The group of works in Last Laugh are not exactly funny, except in the most awkward sense. The works you see in the room do a lot of things, one of which is to get at that ‘wait, wait’ via gestures, theatrical tropes and a bit of dry camp.

Lucas Blalock, Paul Branca, Devon Costello, Harald Thys and Jos de Gruyter, Sanya Kantarovsky, David Robbins

Archived: Last Laugh

September 15 - October 27, 2012

Last Laugh. A joke is all about the timing.
Carol Burnett described comedy as Tragedy plus Time.
Simon Critchley traced humor out to the tune of melancholia with dark results.

They turned it into an equation, middle larded with silence.
I am interested in comic timing and gestures stretched out like taffy. a flabby, bulbous pause.

William Carlos Williams called it the variable foot.
Victor Borge called this simply the extended beat.
Mary Douglas thought the joke played on form, bringing together disparate elements as a way to reveal anew.
Henri Bergson thought that humor was the mechanical encrusted on something living – slowly pulling it down and a laugh was horror at this incongruity – a last ditch effort to distance ourself.
Bertolt Brecht thought you had not yet heard the bad news.

Over-theorizing humor threatens to squash what it can do and a nice long gulp of air may help. I am interested in how stopping just short and stretching out the delay can be a strategy for a visual artist. The group of works in Last Laugh are not exactly funny, except in the most awkward sense. The works you see in the room do a lot of things, one of which is to get at that ‘wait, wait’ via gestures, theatrical tropes and a bit of dry camp.

Installation view, Last Laugh, 2015.
Installation view, Last Laugh, 2015.
Installation view, Last Laugh, 2015.
Installation view, Last Laugh, 2015.
David Robbins
Stationary for The Institute for Advanced Comedic Behavior, 1993
Paper
8.5 x 11 inches
Devon Costello
I Don't Mind Emotional Trauma, 2010
Oil on canvas, lamp and shade
Dimensions variable
Lucas Blalock
Bananas, 2012
Chromogenic print
24 x 20 inches
Ed. 2 of 3, 1 AP
Sanya Kantarovsky
Librarian, 2011
Oil, watercolor and ink on linen
16 x 12 inches
Private collection