David Lusk Gallery • Through July 26
by Cass Teague
In his first solo exhibition in Nashville in over a decade, Paul McLean’s Code Duello, Old Hick & A Big Bang presents an interlinking series of mixed-media works covering a spectrum of compelling narratives, including the colorful and controversial history of President Jackson (“Old Hickory”), the practice of dueling in America, and the art and science of the universe’s origins as represented in modern technology.
McLean’s impetus for weaving the Big Bang into the discourse underpinning the show arose from his doctoral course work at the European Graduate School. His approach, which he calls “4D” or “4th dimensional art,” provides an integrative framework for layered techniques. Most of the images in Code Duello, Old Hick & A Big Bang consist of abstract figures that confront space and time beyond the limits of strict 3D and 2D representation. For this exhibit, McLean partnered with long-time collaborator Shane Kennedy, who prepared lush surfaces for some of the paintings in the Jackson series and provided substantial technical support.
Ultimately, Code Duello, Old Hick & A Big Bang is an exposition on questions we have about what it means to be human in contemporary society and how we recreate ourselves and our experiences to fit into the world.
Code Duello, Old Hick & A Big Bang will be on view July 1 through July 26 at David Lusk Gallery, with an opening reception on July 5. For more information, visit www.davidluskgallery.com.