Zg Gallery is pleased to present Benjamin Cook's first solo exhibition in Chicago.
"How Do I Know You?" will include new paintings and sculptures. Cook received
his B.F.A. from the University of Louisville and is currently a M.F.A candidate at the
University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. The show opens Friday, September 9th,
from 5:30-7:30pm and runs through October 29, 2016.
Benjamin Cook Artist Statement:
My paintings are made for a digital world, but not one that exists purely online. The works explore
a space akin to daily interactions, which are often structured through, and mediated by, a digital
presence. I am interested in deconstructing the binary of the digital and the physical. I draw from
methods of construction that root themselves in a digital language and apply them to the traditional
tools of painting.
Processes of drawing on Snapchat photos, rendering shapes in Photoshop through layers, and
abstracting palettes from video games or blogs are pulled from the protocols of computer code,
and applied to personal and art histories to create images and objects that exist in an awkward
in between state. They exist as failures of digital processes, while simultaneously acknowledging
their limitations as a physical presence.
The t-shirt series comes from a similar language as the abstractions, but are applied to recognizable
images. The shirts, rendered through a process of layers derived from a YouTube video about “how to
render rocks in Photoshop,” are using the visual language of digital culture to examine personal histories
and relationships to pre-Internet culture. They are part reconciliation of my own life (growing up both with
and without easily accessible information and social medias) and part visual research of how aesthetics
have been co-opted by the digital processes in recent years. Where as the abstractions come from a
deconstruction of algorithmic system like patterns, the shirts take the abstractions and apply them to real
Zg Gallery, 300 W. Superior St., Chicago, IL 60654
T. 312-654-9900 | Gallery Hours: Tuesday-Saturday 10-5:30 CST