Unedited conversations between artist in a productive critique discovering thesis and processes behind the work.
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September 20 - November 01, 2014
Ramos: have you seen Armetta's website?
Guerrier: has he been making paintings of presidents?
Ramos: they're just friends
Guerrier: he and Obama?
Ramos: that's what it looks like
unless Armetta has another series on DC landscapes or Honolulu
Guerrier: the text for the show mentioned "paint presidents crossing rivers"
Ramos: Obama did cross the Pacific
Guerrier: the Pacific River
Ramos: is there one? I meant the ocean
Guerrier: let's check
Guerrier: maybe in Vancouver
Ramos: or Alaska
Guerrier: well, Armetta's paintings were enigmatic
i see in his text he makes many references to steampunk and other anachronistic things
or at least propose anachronistic propositions, references to Da Vinci, for example
Ramos: maybe he is a time traveler, like Da Vinci
Guerrier: i am not sure
time travel is one of the loveliest ideas
Ramos: maybe these paintings are the future dystopia of South Florida
Guerrier: his landscape and texts offer a kind of dread
i saw dystopia, but i asked why
Ramos: I don't know why
there is a lot of comedy/satire to his writing
Guerrier: the ominous cloud in those landscapes lead to those thoughts
Ramos: and the lack of human presence, the lack of sunlight
Guerrier: some comedy and satire that i have not bridged to the paintings
even though that is the premise
Ramos: perhaps subtle pleasures in watching it all dissolve
Guerrier: do you know what 10a/10b refers to?
the title of the show
Ramos: there is a movie with that title
Ramos: a thriller
it refers to apartment numbers
let me see what else there is
Guerrier: movie is in pre-production
Ramos: the original was called 301/302
Guerrier: tax form reference
Ramos: yeah I don't know
I like dystopia with attached cynicism
Guerrier: there is a video game
Ramos: and bus routes
Guerrier: is that what he was playing with Obama?
bus route, nice
Ramos: discussing the future after Armetta traveled there
maybe time travel happens in a bus
September 20 - November 01, 2014
Ramos: most of the pieces have this dark ghost, cloud
this unknown "other"
Ramos: makes me uneasy
a sort of evil
Guerrier: me as well
ominous to say the least
i want to ask the when as much as the why
in a pre-historic moment, did it look like that?
Ramos: or in the future
Guerrier: is this part of a cycle
and there for also in the future
Ramos: well this steampunk idea
that's futuristic by nature
Guerrier: steampunk suggests a technological moment, not necessarily a time line
steampunk seems to be envisioned as our next moment
Ramos: or a parallel reality
i like it as parallel, best
did you see Lost. the TV series
Ramos: yes I thought of Lost - are you referring to the dark cloud?
Ramos: there is also time travel in Lost
Guerrier: it was poorly explored in the series
but it was fantastic
especially as a character, that seemed to exist outside of time
Ramos: Jacob's brother
Guerrier: i want to bring this thought to Armetta's paintings
but i am reluctant
Jacob, his mother, and his brother became this small thing in the end, but for five seasons, it represented the scariest thing in that universe
Ramos: yes, once he was given a narrative, it ceased to be scary
Guerrier: i did not want an explanation
i wanted the confrontation with the unknown
Ramos: maybe that's why Armetta doesn't have a narrative
he sort of circles around with comedy
Guerrier: you might be right
but so far, i don't like Armetta's stories.
i like the paintings, and want to move about those landscapes
having timeless thoughts
Ramos: yes, or meet people that live there, find out what happened
Guerrier: the painting on the invitation is called Sunrise Event II
it maybe too casual for me
you are right. something did occur
i don't expect those there, if there is anyone there, to help me understand
Ramos: ohhh wait
Plant Hardiness Zones 10a/10b
Guerrier: what is that?
plant zones, USDA
Ramos: "Armetta’s paintings depict uninhabited landscapes in South Florida, specifically those of Plant Hardiness Zones 10a/10b."
Guerrier: nice reference
i like that a lot.
what are you quoting? the press release?
Ramos: the email invite
Guerrier: i forgot to read that
Ramos: yes, well all the information is scattered
like a treasure hunt
Guerrier: i suspect Aramis wrote that.
referring to painting and landscapes
i also like the sort of pop and fissure of paint
suggesting something coming through
September 20 - November 01, 2014
Guerrier: in the Star Trek series, it usually indicates a space-time anomaly
i want to read our landscape through those sci-fi references
so maybe in this parallel universe, no one lives in 10a/10b, anymore
the everglades as taken Florida back
Ramos: nobody lives there now
Guerrier: we do
Ramos: not in zone 10a/10b
Guerrier: all of Miami is in 10b
Ramos: oh really?
Guerrier: the paintings depict the uninhibited parts
Ramos: got it
Guerrier: so the cloud
is it evil?
maybe it is a new unknown
that comes with darkness and distance
i am contrasting it to the megalopolis that are to come
Ramos: maybe the cloud lives there now
or lives everywhere and it is only apparent in the landscape
cloud is here
we just don't see it
Guerrier: when the lights are down
Ramos: Armetta is lifting the veil for us
now we might see the cloud everywhere we go
Guerrier: maybe he offers glimpses
i hope not to see the cloud
Ramos: even if it's the truth?
Guerrier: it is unsettling
the truth? there many truths
Ramos: the truth about the cloud
i hate the Lost writers when they tried to tell me the truth about their cloud
i like complexity
Ramos: Armetta is not telling you the narrative
he is letting you know of it's existence
parameters for fear
isn't that what you want?
Guerrier: i am not sure if he is telling me of it's existence
we deduced aspect the cloud based on our own references
fear is not bad
fear sharpens the mind
and thickens the mystery
Ramos: fear is produced by the reptilian parts of our brain, the oldest part of out brain, the amygdala
and it is meant for surviving violent landscapes
maybe Armetta found a way to activate the amygdala, with unknown evils within uninhabited landscape
Guerrier: to be reminded that we are animals
maybe a good thing
Ramos: or to be reduced to a reptilian state
i'm not comfortable with that
Guerrier: well, i would offer
it is not a reduction
it may be a trance-like mechanism to connect to an earlier self, or earlier time
Ramos: yes but why?
Guerrier: i don't want to go back to the reptilian either
we might loose art, architecture, science.
Ramos: why not push evolution forward
perhaps it is a way to create yet another parallel existence
Guerrier: maybe because it would not serve us
Ramos: what would not serve us?
Guerrier: pushing evolution forward would not serve us.
it would serve the new emerging species
homo sapiens blahblah
but not us
Ramos: maybe Armetta is a reptilian
Guerrier: he looked human
but looks may deceive us
Ramos: maybe that's how he knows Obama
Guerrier: the reptilian are in with power