My favorite bit of Columbus, Ohio-based artist Luke Ahern’s artist statement reads that he is “Cultivating an attitude that responds to struggles with the absurdity of artistic action, the lunacy of this discipline…” Countless times I have grappled with this very notion of the absurdity of art. When it comes down to it, why? But then, of course, inevitably, why not?
Ahern explores art as object, material as thing. I’m drawn to the juxtapositions of texture and color, often appearing at first to go against the grain, literally and figuratively, of what I find aesthetically appealing. The colors “don’t go,” the shapes are all over the place, but given an extra moment or two to take it all in, these variables consolidate to produce a compelling, often electrifying body of work. Optically, they kind of make your eyes go ‘woo!’ for lack of a more technical term to describe what’s happening with those cerulean blue stripes on the red geometric ground. (Where are my 3D glasses?)
Luke Ahern earned an MFA in 2012 from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Check out more work and information, along with the artist’s blog, at lukejahern.weebly.com.