Fredericks & Freiser is pleased to announce an exhibition of paintings and drawings by Zak Smith. Unfortunately, he has once again refused to make art about anything, which does make it rather difficult to write a traditional press release.


We keep asking "Hey Zak, is this 20-foot drawing you made intended to subtly undermine normative assumptions about the relationship of public to private spaces in our increasingly de-centered psychosocial environment?" and he keeps saying things like "No." Or we say, "Zak, are these paintings of porn actresses that you know meant to offer a critical counter-narrative to popular depictions of gender?" and he says, "Nope. Maybe you could fill out the press release by using one of those on-line postmodern text generators."


"We tried that, and got: 'Debord’s critique of the structural paradigm of discourse suggests that sexual identity has objective value. Several deconstructivisms concerning nihilism may be revealed.' But Zak, our attachment to outdated Judeo-Christian cultural assumptions demands that we can't allow ourselves to accept pleasure unless it has meaning. Plus, y'know, we need a paragraph where we quote you saying something smart."

"How about: 'Meaning is the most interesting thing about a bad painting and the least interesting thing about a good painting'? Can I go now? I have a lot of work to do."


We do find some consolation, however, in the fact that the pictures are excruciatingly beautiful.


About The Artist
Zak Smith was born in 1976 and lives and works in Los Angeles. His work is, somewhat surprisingly, included in several public collections including The Museum of Modern Art, New York; The Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; The Saatchi Gallery, London; and The Whitney Museum of American Art, where his work was included in the 2004 Whitney Biennial. His work has also been exhibited at The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; The Contemporary Museum of Art, Baltimore; The National Portrait Gallery, Washington DC; and The Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh. In addition to his recently published memoir We Did Porn, two books of his art work have been published--Pictures of Girls and Pictures Showing What Happens on Each Page of Thomas Pynchon's Novel Gravity's Rainbow. This is his fifth show at Fredericks & Freiser.