Thursday, November 15, 6-9 PM

Musical performance by the artist at 8 PM (Doors shut at 7:45 PM)

A+E STUDIOS, 160 West Broadway, New York, NY 10013

A+E Studios is pleased to present, The King is Dead Long Live the King, an exhibition of drawings, paintings and sculptures from David King that explore the efficacy of consumerism and its direct effect on happiness and fulfillment. Growing up in a strict Jewish Orthodox family, painting became King’s refuge from a highly structured and sheltered existence. The canvas has since been his preferred medium of self-discovery; a place to explore and define his own evolving identity. 

 There is a subtle irreverence to King’s striking and unpredictable juxtapositions, toeing the line between representation and abstraction. Collaged body parts distorted by expressive brushstrokes of paint sit atop amorphous bodies and bold fields of layered color. King inserts multiple lines of inquiry within each work, adding disparate details and references (dates spanning a thousand years, repeating “SALE” and “STOP” signs). These refences purposely distract the viewer from any obvious message and challenge them to form their own narrative. These breadcrumb like clues serve as reactionary diversions, illuminating ideas but never fully explaining them. This method doesn’t uncover truth so much as bring to light our own personal biases, experience, ignorance, hopes and confusion. 

King noticed patterns of external manipulation throughout his entire life; first being told what to believe and then what to desire, realizing having all that he wants has left him with nothing of true value. Plato’s well-known allegory of the cave in The Republic describes the process of acquiring knowledge as the evolution from darkness to light. In this journey, humans are able to gain an understanding of what is actually real. The metaphor contemplates a divide between ignorance and enlightenment—between the ‘visible’ world and the ‘intelligible’ realm. King’s work draws heavily on this narrative - the material world, the one we can see, touch, hear and smell, is just a half-seen image of reality. Relying on physical senses alone or trusting all we see creates a sense of blindness, and King desires to see the truth.