I Think Alexey Stepanov Is Not What Steinbeck Said We Have Become 2016. Acrylic on canvas, 16 x 20″
“I have named the destroyers of nations: comfort, plenty, and security —out of which grow a bored and slothful cynicism, in which rebellion against the world as it is, and myself as I am, are submerged in listless self-satisfaction.”
On practice, I am an advocate of most principles stated in the Stuckist Manifesto. For painting, yes, and sometimes spiritual meditation, but never for moral growth. Never for that. Unfortunately, a painting will show its character, humor, humanity, and moral depth immediately. Anyone can see a pretty picture. Heck, they’re everywhere we look. Even on tissue boxes! If trained right, toads could make pretty pictures too, as long as they feared death, and, like most humans today, ignored all paths leading to mortality.
I am a moralist. That is a heavy word with multiple meanings, but for me the words “progressive” or “freedom fighter” would fit depending on the circumstance. If money was taken out of government, I would be a libertarian. While people are taxed, I believe in progressive, socialistic solutions, so that all citizens may live with potential dignity leading to possible contentment.
Now in this modern age, over here in the armed fear camp of the United States, it is politically incorrect to wear your thoughts on your sleeve unless you are an angry right-wing bigot, or easy-fix, never offend even an asshole left-wing dandy. We allow for stupid people in broad daylight, but shun intelligent ones creatively searching for a better way.
Art must blow up a bridge. It need not be a Golden Gate or Throggs Neck—it could be one of those quaint covered bridges of New Hampshire infested with carpenter ants, for not everyone is an able and ready revolutionary. The bridge does not have to be political; it could be very personal, because you might need several revolutions occurring inside yourself before expressing your first true hard copy of what might bring value to any number of human descendants.
Today, all the pretty pictures do is speak like my uncle when asked about his ideas for the future… “I don’t care. I’ll be dead before the ca-ca hits the propellor.”
Alexey Stepanov and several of his friends are having an exhibition this afternoon out in the surrounding countryside of St. Petersburg. As Stuckists, there is only an exterior wall of a cube house in the woods to hang their work on. As men and women artists, there is all of sick Manhattan to feel ashamed.
And promotional video