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Ian Alan Paul  San Francisco, CA

* All images used with permission. Please do not distribute without first contacting the artist.

About Ian Alan

This particular set of work is meant to explore the complexities and acute subtleties found within the experience of bourgeois life. The photographs investigate how the violence inherent in the act of inhabiting certain social spaces manifests itself in the everyday moment – in our sexuality, ideas, spaces and experiences. The work examines how the desires that exist in our personal lives relate to the desires of the totality.

As a young American artist I feel a responsibility to react to the political and social spaces that I am complicit in. I believe that my role is to question and complicate the connections between the personal and the political. Art is a vehicle through which we can question and rethink the structures and systems which occupy our everyday lives. Through my work I hope to decenter meaning and interrogate our assumptions about society and culture.

My work is intended to contain a narrative quality, one without a clear chronology but rather a deliberate open-endedness, one which invites the viewer to imagine the situation in a variety of different ways. By looking through the lens of the everyday moment and studying the suburban landscape, the work allows us to rethink established and rigid social orders within our culture and create spaces for new meaning and identities to exist. The text placed in the work complicates this rethinking, by presenting a variety of frameworks with which to approach the rest of the visual content. The space between the meaning of the text and the various subjects in the photographs is where the conflict occurs. It is at this specific site that we experience the dissonance and violence present in each piece, and it is where we can find and produce ideas about the work itself.

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10 of 16 reactions displayed

"scholarly artist statements are a requirement of serious graduate programs. "the shorter the better" isn't generally an option. neither is pedestrian vocabulary. i am often bored by "political" art but these images really capture my attention and have me contemplating the issues. the projection series is fantastic. well thought out and executed. the play of light is very interesting.thank you."

"nice pic"

"Interesting how the commentary is drawing so much discussion! I enjoy most art that has thought behind it, and do agree that any that provokes discussion has achieved a purpose ?? whether or not it is as the artist intended is another question. For the record I find this work mildly interesting, but not anything that would stop me in my tracks. As far as the language (and English is wonderful with its plethora or adjectives) the only comment I would have is that Bourgeois does not equal middle class. Bourgeois are people that live of the fruits of others labour, or are make money from an enterprise?¦the inverse would be the proletariat ?? people that have nothing to sell but there labour, it??s not necessarily a ??class? issue."

"These pictures start a conversation about war - very effective!"

"I actually enjoyed the statement more than the art itself."

"I have to agree with "Sorry?¦ just don??t get it". Looks like a couple of shots to test the low light capability of the camera. No?"

"I like the images.But oh dear,"the violence inherent in the act of inhabiting certain social spaces manifests itself in the everyday moment"Why do "artists" feel it necessary to indulge in hilarious pseudo-intellectual, meaningless pap like this when trying to describe their work?Your work is it's own statement! Have the grace to let it speak for itself."

"this is the most relevant and poignant stuff i've seen in a long time."

"Hmmm... whether or not you "like" this art or not, it seems to be performing its function by drawing for strong responses. As a matter of fact, by looking at these pieces, and reading these responses, this is the most I have been directly involved in this war."

"I have to disagree with the comment that the artist statement is pretentious. Using a vocabulary word a little outside very day language shouldn't merit ridicule.You have to remember that there is a real person behind the art and accusing him of being pretentious is a big deal and shouldn't be taken lightly. Maybe thinking more in terms of advice might be better because I'm sure that the artist is probably going to read these comments. Anyway, the art looks great, but I suggest maybe simplifying the artist statement. It repeats itself far too much."

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