Even Surgeons Get Bored

Quintessa Matranga

June 12 – July 3, 2016

Quintessa Matranga’s “Even Surgeons Get Bored” presents two paintings, along with the experience of being served free coffee, approximating many coffee shop/art gallery conditions. As in those circumstances, both the art and coffee may be deeply appreciated and savored, or simply consumed in an unexamined, unthinking manner.

Of course artists experience boredom, the craving for the unsettling, unfamiliar or just unusual, just as we all do at different times. Matranga’s Grandma Mitzie says “even surgeons get bored.” For us all, the opportunity for boredom is always available and present.

In the painting "Living With an Imbecile" a Chow dog stares out with a sense of irritation and frustration, stuck with an owner and unable to assert agency in its own life, serving its owner’s instagram followers without personal reward. An unseen person (The photographer? The painter?) creating an image of the dog for their own needs. In San Francisco, it’s well known there are more dogs than children. Who are the guardians? And what responsibilities do the have?

"DSLRIOT GRRRL" captures the photographer as consumer, as “brand identity” builder, as hashtag marketer. She takes the picture with an intent to present the “perfect” image that has purpose, that can be used. The painting reflects and broadcasts that same effort. The coffee cup exists as yet another powerless object, inanimate in this case and without any interior, emotional life. The subject of the photographer becomes the object of the painting, stripped of identity, and translated into symbology. Framing an image and presenting a consumable product continues in a cyclical manner, inviting the viewer into the process as well.

With art, fantasies are created to be indulged in and/or resisted. Indulgence, and resistance are both reactions attempting to provoke and escape any sense of boredom, if only for a moment. “Even Surgeons Get Bored.”

—Leef Smith