Bryan Wheeler’s ‘Slinger is an exhibition of large-scale paintings and small digital works based on Ed Dorn’s Gunslinger, an “anti-epic,” comic-Western poem written between 1968-1975.

Artist’s Statement

Taken from questions asked by Hills Snyder in 2016 that are still relevant:
Is it loud enough?
Never quite. Probably because my senses are somewhat blunted by years of spicy food and the side-effects of playing loud music in clubs.

What do you reach for first?
Varies. Could be a charcoal stick, a guitar, or these days, a book on/about John Dewey/ethics/pragmatism.

If your work is the oar of a canoe that writes sentences as it passes through the water, what floats?
An oil slick with redneck detritus from a tornado, like big mac wrappers and American flag bandanas, which obscure, just below the surface, just visible in the murky water, emergent archetypes of creation and creative destruction, generation and disintegration. 

If you stay up all night, does magic happen?
Yes, always. But it’s gone after I sleep it off. But, it’s not like magic in the sense that the mysterious and impossible made present. Instead, it’s a revealing of things I’d been missing. In hindsight, they don’t get me as far as I’d thought in the moment, but they at least get me on right roads.

There is a goat that lives under a bridge in your neighborhood. He always engages you in conversation when you pass by. What does he like to talk about?
How the moon reflects off the water and it’s nicer at night this time of year. Beaver and jumping fish.

In a not completely understood universe, what for you is the one thing more influential than the fact that the earth turns?
That the universe is expanding, but not indefinitely, and that energy and matter exist in a dynamic balance.

You know that time Jerry Jones visited your studio?… What was the most memorable thing that was said?
Yee-haw, hot damn, that’s a nice ass.

What is the one song, movie or book with which you have the deepest experience? 
Gravity’s Rainbow…read it @ 22 years old, traveling through Central America for 2 months with a girlfriend. First extensive time outside U.S., first real relationship, first realization that the best art is difficult to understand.

Is there a good reason why Anish Kapoor should have all the really good black?
Yeah, b/c…1) that’s the way shit works, 2) those with the means control the most precious and rare, 3) how else would we know who the elite artists are, 4) because he’s a dick and that’s the kind of things dicks do.

Have you ever seen someone, one car over at a red light, brushing their teeth?
Nope. Picking nose, yes.

Why do bi-corn hats and stovepipe hats look like upside down boat hulls and chimneys?
Because there are only so many motifs/structures/arrangements available to humans and we can’t help seeing fluffy bunnies in clouds.

If you were going to say “pickup truck” instead of some other word, what would the other word be?
Rig or outfit.

What do you like best about making things?
Having something to do other than watching TV; being alone; pushing objects into the void, cluttering the universe; beating back meaninglessness and death.

Remember that time that everything really fell into place? What happened?
Not really. I enjoy that things never quite ravel.

What do you hear last at night and first in the morning?
Besides a toilet flushing?