Walter Scott’s new body of work The Pathos of Mandy focuses on a fictional artist named Mandy. The exhibition presents a video and accompanying installation which comment on alienation, the myth versus reality of the artist figure, and self-representation. Dealing with the loss of legal ownership of a character he invented at the axis of his work, Mandy is portrayed as a solipsistic artist, who becomes increasingly desperate to piece together who he is—both personally and artistically—now that the central focus of his art practice is gone.
In a text accompanying the exhibition, independent curator Loreta Lamargese writes, “The question of artistic license, often romantically conjured as an open field of play, is closed down and stifled by the bureaucratic structures that grant us further access to one’s creations. Within these new confines, Mandy’s journey takes us from an intimate conversation with his partner, his reading of Kathy Acker and Roland Barthes, to finally landing wryly on his adoption of a new artistic medium, quilts. With Wendy occupying the role of Walter Scott’s alter ego, the emergence of Mandy opens up an infinitely regressive field of identifications. This reverberating grid of persons and their potential doubles, is a site as emancipatory as it is claustrophobic.”
Walter Scott (born 1985) is was an artist-in-residence at ISCP in 2019. Scott is an interdisciplinary artist working across comics, drawing, video, performance and sculpture. His comic series, Wendy, chronicles the continuing misadventures of a young artist in a satirical version of the contemporary art world. Wendy has been featured in Canadian Art, Art in America, and the New Yorker. It was selected for the 2016 edition of Best American Comics, published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, New York. Recent exhibitions include Who Isn’t She? A Wendy Retrospective, Galerie UQO, Gatineau; Slipping on the Missing X, Macaulay Fine Art, Vancouver; and Betazoid in a Fog, Remai Modern, Saskatoon. Scott’s new graphic novel, Wendy, Master of Art, will be available from Drawn & Quarterly in Spring 2020. Scott’s residency is supported by a Canada Council for the Arts grant supporting the arts and cultures of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Peoples.
Major support for this exhibition is provided by Canada Council for the Arts. This program is also supported, in part, by New York City Council District 33; New York City Council District 34; New York City Council Member for the 33rd District Stephen T. Levin; New York City Council Member for the 34th District Antonio Reynoso; New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council; New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature; Hartfield Foundation; and Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF).