Édouard Manet, The Dead Christ with Angels, 1864
I consider the areas that have been reworked in a painting as signs of an artist seeking precision in a disordered house. I am always drawn to the painted gestures that imply – more than truly ever becoming defensible representations of – hands, feet, neck or rock. The feet do not rest, the body does not sit, the hands do not touch. My pleasure is housed in these moments of recognition when discordant parts produce a reconcilable whole, despite the fact that Manet’s attentive toiling has forced the work into a state of disassembly. He is a painter distracted, beguiled by representation.
Jennifer Packer lives in New York, USA. In early 2017, her work was included in the group shows ‘Regarding The Figure’, Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, and ‘We The Watchers Are Also Bodies’, Hercules, New York. Her solo show at The Renaissance Society, Chicago, USA, runs until 5 November.
First published in Issue 6