ON VIEW: October 4th to October 7th at 198 Allen Street
GALLERY PARTY: Friday October 5th /// 7pm - 11pm at 198 Allen Street

When someone famous in the entertainment industry comes forward as a painter it can be tempting to dismiss them as a dilettante. We may assume they are looking to cash in on their notoriety or are seeking some sort of undeserved artistic “cred”. James Franco and Jim Carrey both have recently faced this kind of criticism for their expressions in paint.

We dare you to do the same with the work of Doc Hammer. The result of a practice that predates his other creative ventures; his skill rendering life in oils is undeniable.

Best known for his role as a co-creator of Adult Swim’s longest running original series (The Venture Bros.) Doc Hammer is a true contemporary renaissance man. In addition to writing, he is an accomplished musician (Requiem in White, Mors Syphilitica, Weep), but perhaps most importantly, he paints.

“When I close my eyes and go, What am I? It’s a painter.” - Doc Hammer, Inked Magazine

Hammer is modest about his immense skill as a fine artist, saying “Painting is showing up and dealing with sucking.” When pressed he clarifies that “when I say I suck, it actually means I know that inside me is better. Dealing with my sucking and proudly saying this sucks is how I get up and do it again. If I can’t let that thing get out, I have to apologize for it with my next piece.” - Doc Hammer, Auxiliary Magazine

His work has been compared to Caravaggio for it’s adept and dramatic study of light. While heavily influenced by 19th century classical art, there is something unmistakably contemporary about the work.

Portraits of women in their underwear are historically the home of objectification, and thoughtless sexualization. Hammer's plays on this trope and reverses the roles. His portraits carry a power, and glare back at us in judgment. We're no longer able to safely look at one of his subjects because they appear not only aware of us, but clearly not happy with our critical gaze. They are not objects but very human conduits who together form, as the artist puts it, a “choir of tiny moments forever lost.”

Con Artist Collective & Gallery
119 Ludlow St. New York, New York 10002
Open Monday through Saturday 11am to 7pm