RESIDUE

Collaboration between Chris Diedericks and André Naudé

An exhibition at AVA (Association for visual arts) Cape Town - 2004

Chris Diedericks

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André Naudé

Residue is the first collaboration between the artists Chris Diedericks and André Naudé, respectively living and working in Johannesburg and Pretoria. The premise of this event is based on the antithesis of so-called modernist theory of the New. The artists are collaboratively surveying the audiovisual residue of the previous century, both macroscopic and microscopic.

Diedericks and Naudé’s collaboration interfaces a cerebral, sensual, and mercantile sphere. The exhibition is plotted to underline the paradox of postmodern “cat burglarising” and the beatification of “das Kapital”.

Naudé cross-dresses irrelevant universal cultural icons in his pursuit of dissecting twenty first century humanity. Ageless incisions penetrate the so-called human power base. Vapid cross-cultural appropriation, motivated by greed, subliminal power control, is veiled by soft painterly decorum to conceal the true identity of the inevitable residue.

The notion of commodity/commercialism is openly flirted with, although concealed with an obvious seductive veneer of darkest irony. Pestilent plants, invisible albinos and overexposed ornamental vases, meaninglessly partake in a charade of concealed pessimism.

Diedericks explores masculinity and gender identity, by challenging traditional, religious, sexual, and gender stereotypes; ideological residue in persisting patriarchal society. He often employs cat burglarising and appropriation, as visual tools in support of his ongoing personal interest in the challenging mix between traditional Christian iconography and modern gay imagery. By utilising this postmodern strategy, the artist is continually trying to expose the exclusionary and judgmental nature of traditional Western religion, and “normal” life in general. Diedericks often work in the grey areas which are absent in the inexorable society we live in; most individuals only feel comfortable with black and white explanations for everything, with hardly any understanding/compassion for blurred edges in society, we just cannot ignore.

Chris’s work often writes a new story, a different reality, and a possible truth for marginalised/silenced minorities and is meant to upset the traditional, outdated “keepers” of Victorian moral values. These “new realities” are encroaching more and more on contemporary life, whether individuals like it or not. Notions of “right” and “wrong” are urgently questioned.

His works are often “over-the-top”, and gimmicky lights are an ironic disruption of the seriousness of the issues engaged in the work, perhaps alluding to the pettiness of the prejudices and dogma that often inform exclusion/discrimination. Kitsch is employed as a strategy with which to theatrically de-stabilise and critique conventional values and belief systems, especially those produced within heterosexual patriarchal contexts. Kitsch and bad taste, ironically applied in the work, is the residue in an ignorant world subscribing to “bad taste”.

According to Yvette Greslé, lecturer at Vega The Brand Communications School in Sandton, Diedericks positions himself as an artist functioning as social commentator, through a visual exploration/challenge of ideologies and their implications in society, and culture.

André Naudé & Chris Diedericks