Gallery MX/Galerie MX, one of the top contemporary art galleries in Montreal, had the pleasure and honor of hosting one of New York’s finest contemporary artist, Scooter La Forge on Tuesday August 18th. There were only a select few of his works on display, encapsulating the last 10 years of Scooter’s career. I had a chance to interview Scooter La Forge himself and he had nothing but the best to say about Montreal, “Montreal is fucking fierce,” he said when I asked how he was enjoying the city.
When asking about the results of his show and the overall concept, La Forge pointed me to lead artistic director Olivier Gagnon. The overall flow and concept of the show was well thought out, all works were displayed to showcase the artist’s many facets and talents. La Forge’s work appears as an extension of himself as a painter and identity as an artist. Upon entering the gallery, there was a large black wall with his name written in large, bold chalk lettering. The chalkboard added a different take on name display. As we often see in museums, usually artist’s names are printed in a dull font — nothing too enticing. This added flare and spice by comparison to match the works on display.
There was a fresh and upbeat vibe to the night paired with old school hip-hop classics playing in the background, matching the crowd that was in attendance. La Forge’s paintings are quite playful and child-like. This whimsical approach to his paintings sets him apart from other contemporary artists and painters of today. His use of vibrant colors and rough brush strokes adds to the content, which is actually far from child-like themes.
One of the paintings that spoke to me the most was Skull with Clown Eyes and Balloon Nose. The more I looked at it the more it pulled me in. I noticed the cat nose, the small clowns replacing the eyes in the skull. Like the majority of La Forge’s work there’s always an element of abstraction and underlying erotic imagery. Sexual innuendo is obvious in his work In Trouble for Watching an X-rated movie,which uses cats instead of human subjects to display the punishment that is associated with scolding a child.
The works that stood out most to me and that I found was most unique were his hand painted t-shirt collection from a collaboration that he had previously done with Patricia Field, a very prominent costume designer based in New York.
His paintings tell a story, the story permits the viewer to understand where he’s coming from. Seeing the world through his eyes. His work is cutting edge and is always amazes audiences.
Scooter La Forge’s retrospective at Galerie MX (333 Viger O) until August 31st.