Garden of the dispossessed
David Hochbaum’s body of work is about searching through memory and moving forward. While harvesting the visions of his youth, it is not looking into the dark but into the light with eyes closed, below the physical surface.
David constructs paintings by building them on a melange of wood, metal, and paper, both photographic and printed matter. Each work is painted with oil, acrylics, varnishes, pencils and inks. These images are layered physically as well as historically, combining the figurative approach of the 19th century photographer with the medieval alchemist projected through the eyes of a 20th century cubist.
David’s technique undergoes several stages, usually beginning with a sketch or a few jotted down lines from a passing thought. The artist then collects the pieces of the puzzle, using bits of images from texts and found materials adjoined with props and live models. The combination is arranged and the photograph is taken. The photo shoot resembles a sort of bizarre, gothic theater, which David creates spontaneously as the shoot proceeds. The next step is in the darkroom where David prints the image onto silver black and white paper. The final product consists of silver prints and paints and whatever David manages to get on the surface. Every piece is encased in a custom built frame that David makes from wood, metals, and plastic, specifically for each image.
David’s images represent the contemplation of human behavior as a reaction to history, astronomy, sex, and iconoclastic symbols. While maintaining dialogue with his own behavior, each picture produces a vision from his private world bound to elements and symbols; an exposition of women and men caged in a world constructed by natural elements and surrounded by foreign symbols. Artistic craftsmanship of the captured image is married with the depositions of alienation war with archetypal roles of gender, age, and reason. The figures in David’s work seek a balance between the static and kinetic forces of a very surreal and psychosexual environment in which they dwell.
Somnambulist and the silver birds