As Karl Addison’s art and vision evolves—from blank slate, to paper, to mural, to installation, to unoccupied public space—our understanding and comprehension of the world around us begins to unfold as well. We may not notice his input, infiltrating our subconscious—our everyday—but it’s there. A beautiful woman’s face composed of negative space watching peacefully over a cemetery in Wedding, a fragile old Jewish woman towering over a decommissioned factory in Berlin, an urban zoo of imagined creatures deposited all over the globe, an abandoned room filled with 4,500 fat babies…Addison’s art and commentary on history and culture are everywhere, becoming part of the collective unconscious.
Through his travels to Italy, Israel, Japan, throughout the US, and his current residence in Berlin, Addison’s overarching theme of people and the spaces they occupy and interact with has taken shape. By focusing on pieces, which work to become part of public space rather than interrupt it, his intent to create regenerative art through murals and other mediums is being actualized. He has achieved this both independently and collaboratively with other contemporary artists and painters, most notably James Boullough. Addison’s recent and current collaborative projects also highlight his more narrowed focus of interconnectedness, “connecting humanity around the world with different cultures from different places,” he wants us to value tiny lines, details, to appreciate a world view and hopefully, start extolling minute details of our own.
It takes an extraordinary person, one with talent, courage, and patience, to express himself the way Addison does. To project his voice and vision for the world to see—to rip it out of a sketch book or a blank page in his mind—and produce it. To take it beyond the two-dimensional and spray paint, wheat paste, bomb, the side of a building with an illimitable piece of art. To exhibit in public space—on walls, on clothing, in art galleries—what a beautiful fucking thing. Art—“a new mode of obtaining power of mind over mind” leaving the watching to the watched.
- written by jennifer weitman