David Goldes uses chemical and electrical transformations of materials such as graphite and silver to form the basis of his work. Many of the changes that occur on the drawing surfaces through the agency of high voltage electricity and sulfur compounds are only partially controllable. Coupled with Goldes' imagery a hybrid practice of intention and unpredictability emerges. For the artist, this combination resonates with many of the uncertainties that we currently face. In the electrified works, the drawings yield evidence-blackened burns, holes and surface scarring-while the chemically altered silver leaf works show unplanned colored areas of oranges, greens and blues. During the development of this work, organized and geometric forms gave way to abstract, fragmented, biomorphic forms. Ideas referencing instability and balance, the effects of proximity and adjacency, belief and illusion, as well as microscopic imaginings became intertwined with pressing social concerns of social upheaval and the global pandemic. The work also offers a contrary motif rooted in the aesthetic qualities of the materials used, their properties, and the artist's delight in harnessing ways of transforming them. Unpredictable Drawings evolved from a related photographic practice based on the artist's observations of physical phenomena related to electricity. This new body of work seeks to materially present the action of electricity and chemical change in the most direct fashion possible. The drawings are a shift from a 'picture of' to 'the thing itself' and can be seen as an expansion of Goldes' interest in a multilayered representation of phenomena.
Unpredictable Drawings is published by Radius Books, with text by Pavel S. Pyś.