Victor Maldonado has been thinking about nothing. Specifically, his most recent exhibit at Froelick Gallery, All and Nothing, is an inquiry into the meaning of making nothing- a distinctly separate act from not making anything. His concern is less with the literal nothing- an empty void, a lack of any thing- as with the relative definition. Good for nothing, worth nothing, a nobody from nowhere- such statements are heavily objective and pejorative. Everyone has their own nothing. It is the opposite of what an individual, society or economy places value upon.
We know, then, that nothing can have substance. What does one produce when making nothing, and what are the means of production? In some religions, nothing is a state of mind which might be attained through disciplined practice. The TV program Seinfeld is famously “about nothing”, flaunting its' lack of traditional sitcom narrative. John Cage's composition for piano 4'33”, in which no notes are played, makes allowances for the auditory and visual experience the audience may have outside of the traditional musical performance. Similarly, Maldonado here attempts to step back from elements of his established creative practice to give the viewer room to experience as they will. The pieces in All or Nothing are humorous and pointed, such as pages from art history texts, painted over in black or chroma key green to omit, alter or highlight reproductions of well known works. Others further explore Maldonado's familiar bodies of work- hand-printed chain link fence patterns and encaustic panels with crayons embedded in their surfaces. A large scale ink-stamp wall installation will also be present.