NEW YORK, NY (May 26th, 2012)- Last Rites Gallery presents The Apostasy, new works by Nick Baxter, in what will be his second solo show at the gallery.
Nick Baxter's technically demanding painting style dwells somewhere in between traditional sharp-focus still life and modern photorealist styles, while bringing in elements of symbolism and surrealism. His subject matter tends to center around close-ups of skin and visceral, bloody macro-scapes, in exploration of what it means to be human- to have a unique consciousness inhabiting a vessel of flesh and blood.
“These images represent an inquiry into the medicalization of modern society. In our time, the specialized knowledge of an elite group has been canonized and made gospel, resulting in the learned helplessness of an increasingly ill populace. Surgeons and scientists alike have become the new priests of a material-industrial age, in which living organisms seem to be regarded as no more than an assemblage of mechanical parts.
Cultural edicts handed down have portrayed our bodies as flawed, as if still soiled by original sin and in need of salvation. So we prostrate before possessors of a seemingly divine knowledge, an authority built on the upturned ruins of the common sense that modern man has forgotten. With nature gutted and wild instinct thwarted, a remaining paper-thin veil of scientific belief is all that divides story and reality. It is mere faith that separates benevolence from malevolence.
Shrouded in mystery, alien hands descend from the darkness. Otherworldly appendages of the vicars of the corporal levy power upon trembling flesh. Sworn to heal, but with the ability to harm, they are like iron fists in latex gloves.
Science is the new religion, Big Pharma is the church, the doctors are priests, pills our Holy Communion, and sickness is our only hope of salvation when diseases are dollar signs that fortify the edifice.
So this is my apostasy, my leap for sovereignty from the dungeon of a castle made of glass and steel sterility. A journey back towards wholeness in The Garden that made me. A breach of faith in hopes that I may rejoin the wild world and be healed in its immeasurable and immutable wisdom.”