Habitual Despair, Conners Conners, Melbourne, 2021
The works in habitual despair, hint at the nature of Keating’s broader project; an engagement with the constructed nature of language itself. If emotion becomes habitualized then aren’t feelings constructed in the same way, by rules like a language? If so, shouldn’t we ask is there anything that remains unique? Is there anything that can be said to be true?
The series of line drawings are experimental architectural propositions, imbued within a spectral pink atmosphere. In odd juxtapositions between hard and soft forms, geometric and curvilinear line; limbs, forms and objects casually merge; a coffee table is suspended on arms, a room has eyes in the walls, a humongous hairy leg lies prone in a isometric depiction of an apartment and breasts bulge from what would usually be a flat floor.
On the one hand the works are intimate, funny and personal confessions, dealing with masculinity, desire and the inability of representation to fulfil expectations towards mimesis. But on the other hand they point to a more profound disillusion with the inadequacy of artistic language and a search for a hybrid, which might make more sense than the original.
David Keating, the containers, 2021, installation view
David Keating, the containers, 2021, 4K video, sound, 4:15