While the linen envelopes the front side of the slab (including the engravings beneath the spanned frottage), the rear surface, normally exempt from observation and framed by the folded cloth edges and stabilizing wooden supports, reveals a finely chiseled, diagrammatic drawing. With white strokes on a black background, the granite surface recalls a schoolroom chalkboard with its temporary yet universal function: always ready to be erased and rewritten, the chalkboard—even before Beuys—has long symbolized the drafting of new world visions, a surface to record fluxes of energy and ideational constructs.
Similarly universal are the drawings on both sides of this granite sheet, their forms tracing back to pages from Mullican’s extensive trove of handwritten notes, sandblasted here onto the stone. The rough impression of the oil pastel frottage on white linen achieves the same graphic quality as many of the artist’s other multiples, but without integrating the medium.
With Untitled, 2014, Matt Mullican broadens his formal and substantive spectrum to capture the differentiated interplay between image and medium, the drawn and the written, concealment and revelation, and visual and tactile perception. At the same time, the compilation of existential concepts on the box’s screen printed label makes reference to the cosmological character of the diagrams inside.
Granite plate with reliefs
Inside stretcher frame with frottage
Oil stick on canvas
29,7 x 21 x 2 cm
In custom made wooden box
Signed and numbered certificate
Edition of 8