A Camouflaged Rebellion at FL!GHT Gallery

Cosby Lindquist, Lancaster/Los Alamos - Courtesy photo
Courtesy photo
Cosby Lindquist, Lancaster/Los Alamos

Cosby Lindquist’s “Pure Landscape,” currently on view at FL!GHT Gallery, offers a multi-layered view of the landscape, literally. The works employ layered imagery to camouflage and distort multi-environment images. The digitally altered and nearly obscured scenes of the physical world create a push and pull between the foreground and background elements. The uncertainty elicited by these vague images also suggests some darker context—an apocalypse or dystopia, perhaps, but also, with its fleeting sense of place, a nod to Shangri-La.  

“Instead of taking pictures, I wanted to build pictures,” Lindquist explained to one viewer during the show’s opening in early February. In his artist statement, he further clarifies that he “utilizes advanced digital stitching technologies similar to those applied in NASA’s Mars Rover Mission as well as Photosynth and Google maps.” By drawing our attention to the digitalness of these images, Lindquist creates a link between the perception of the real landscape and the equally valid reality of the digitized version with which we have become familiar. In Lindquist’s statement, he allows the viewer access to his central concept writing, “He believes the unlimited amount of digital information has created an inability to articulate what is real and what is digital, and the time spent in front of the screen changes how we remember and interact with physical space.”

Each of these images begins to play with the flatness of space. As they are all digital collages, they lack the tactual qualities and tells that differentiate one layer from the other. Some of the earlier works, such as New Mexico Geometry and Diamondscape #2, are of similar scenes, obscuring a single landscape with a striped pattern. In later pieces this process yields more distorted landscapes based on satellite views of anonymous homes.

With the construction of these artificial places, Lindquist assembles samples of his personal narrative, ideas of surveillance and the subversion of both within the frame. His deconstruction of the images and use of camouflage patterns align with this sabotage and with the subtle suggestion of rebellion against banal, suburban landscapes.

The use of the camera as a mechanical device for seeing has been a topic of discussion since its invention. Lindquist examines this in his statement by saying the “goal is to see as the machine sees in order to reveal the new paradigm through which we perceive and remember the physical world.” The paradigm or theoretical model that these works attempt isn’t that of how the machine sees, per se; it is how the viewer interprets the information being displayed. The abundance of material, both real and digital, being consumed on a daily basis by most people in this country is astounding, and like any hard drive there are bound to be some poorly written files rattling around up there.

Cosby Linquist: Pure Landscape

By appointment; artist talk and closing reception 6-8pm Tue, Feb 25
Fli!ght Gallery
1906 S Flores
(210) 872-2586

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