Pines’ recent work continues in a similar vein to previous paintings of his. There are compounded expressionistic brushstrokes, a continual churning-up and reusing of the paint, and the general working and reworking of the painting surface. These oily excavations tend to juxtapose and violently merge three elements that work at varying speeds on Earth: the slow geologic element of rocks and minerals (rocky, eroded, and stratified surfaces), the animal and human element of relatively primal existence (fleshy pinks and reds), and the technological element of quick advancement (metallic surfaces, ores, and inorganic shapes). The paintings give a sense of how unique, crazy, terrible, and wonderful our current situation is.
My works are indomitably personal, intuitive, and psychological: my paintings are rapidly metamorphosing mirrors of primordial oil. Yet out of the glut of paint on canvas emerges much artistic as well as anthropological and cosmological significance.
Attempting to organize my expressionistic gestures in a prolonged improvisational fashion results in a compounding of second-guesses wrought with frustration at the collapse of control, but something gestates in the chaos and confusion. The piled-on inconsistencies along with the privileging and repeating of awkwardly attained idiosyncratic shapes and colors construct unanticipated new forms that spring from the muddled myriad of coalescing marks. These collective structures provide an excellent impetus for the painting to be labored over in search of a “formally balanced” (or uniquely imbalanced) formation or scene. The surface is frequently excavated, yielding vibrant and complex color sequences. The oily refuse from such excavations is applied to the canvas providing an abrupt impasto. When this mangled, muddied surface is pervaded by various fleshy pinks and reds or gaudy golds and silvers, it conveys a sense of the baroque by allowing a lustrous irreverence to spill through and onto the earnest, assiduous work. This entire process results in a visual narrative that emerges in the work and references previous paintings in my oeuvre.
The flurries of brushstrokes that are ostensibly heaped onto one another in the paintings allude to the uncertainty humans find themselves wallowing through in our overstimulated environment. Whatever is struggled for is lost in the anarchy of our relentlessly corrosive surroundings, but, none-the-less, we do develop consequential things albeit typically unintentional and ephemeral—out of our own tenacity and cosmic luck. In my paintings I see our flesh, besides being buried under the prodigious sums of shtuff produced in modern capitalism, being ripped apart more and more with the implementations of magnificent technologies. We are pulled in countless directions by telecommunications, quick transportations, and other complicating automations in our lives, so much so that the actual feeling of what it is to be inside the body is dulled with the constant barrage of anxiety and attention put forth to pay attention to myriad demands. This odious state along with the obvious monstrosities of new polluting and violent machinations points to something undeniable: grafting technology to the human mess is a clumsy and horrific process. The organic and inorganic amalgamate poorly. Our psyches are casualties shown by the screaming viscera in my work.
We are alienated from the preciousness of life, so my paintings aim right at the most corporeal, relevant, and basic factors of death and sex in order to bring about a somatic reaction in viewing the work. Death, the constant factor in a universe eating itself, is paired with its antipode, sex, the chief act in defying death and decay. My paintings celebrate the overwhelming gravity of our situation with their carnival of radiating ecstasies and sublime, exquisite mutilations. Everything is electrified with bright color and bravado. It all must be affirmed and criticized! Humor and irony are integral parts as well, because to be aware of one’s own futility and transience in this churning cosmos and still thrive requires an appreciation for the absurd; hence the foul figures and shapes flopping and slipping off one another in a slapstick of some oversaturated pornographic space opera. This absurdity is no more humanely or acutely conveyed than through the highly plastic medium of oil paint with its oh-so-rich history that I draw from.