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Underground Gallery • Current


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The Inefficiency of Explanation

Chas Blackford

April 1–May 21, 2022: exhibition dates

Thursday–Saturday, 1–8pm: public hours

Friday April 8, 5–8pm: opening reception and Art Walk

Friday May 13, 5–8pm:  reception and Art Walk


Since the first hominids began to depict their visions on cave walls, their fellow beings have undoubtably asked: ‘What does it mean?’. Many millennia later those questions are still being asked.


How best to answer that? We have academics, art critics and often the creators themselves offering interpretation and insight. The dilemmas that artists face in addressing this intrinsic need of explanation are multiple.


The artist may feel the meaning is apparent and needs no further discussion or revelation; they may deliberately desire to be cryptic or enigmatic; some may not be able to articulate their expression beyond what they have already rendered while for others being aloof may reinforce a desired air of mystery to their art.


Perhaps viewers expect too much in the way of defined meaning, looking for more than what’s there. My belief is that most artists appreciate visceral reaction to their work without the guidance of external analysis. 


A titling a work can help guide (or obfuscate) the interpretation; however some may feel the label “Untitled” is an artistic cop out. So it may really come down to what Rod Stewart so aptly sang: “Every Picture Tells a Story (Don’t it?)”.


Please enjoy my stories and forgive the inefficiency of my explanations, whether visual, title or verbal.  

Instagram: @chasmo99 @chasblackford