Working Proof: Elliott Green

by David Ebony. Art on Paper, September-October 2001, pg.72-73

Elliott Green, Sketch Movies with Stills (2000), a boxed CD-ROM and 24 photolithographs in an edition of 30 plus ten unboxed artist's proofs. The prints measure 12 x 10 in. and were printed on Somerset Soft White paper. The box measures 13-1/2 x 11-1/2 x 1-3/9 inches. The project was printed and fabricated by Kevin Falco and Elliott Green assisted by Eric Oldmixon, David Sun, and others at the LeRoy Neiman Center for Print Studies at Columbia University, New York.

Elliott Green has long been known for his amazing graphic facility—he makes his surrealistic work fast and furiously. But here viewers get the chance to see this virtuosity in action, and might be quite surprised. For the project, Green created a seamless animation of a number of pencil drawings in the process of being made, minus the hand of the artist. Each starts—and here's the surprise—not with a figure, but with just a few abstract lines that quickly map out the sheet. Or maybe it's not such a surprise, for Green's odd, morphing, pansexual figures often feel as if they am subordinated to some kind of predetermined formal pressures, nearly subconscious schema that assure they will straddle the entire picture plane no matter what they are up to.

So here they are, in the process of becoming figures. And here they are as finished works: small photolithographs—24 altogether, more than are animated in the CD-ROM. They manage to retain their original graphite feel in reproduction, including erasures and the pentimenti that give them an oldmasterly feel. They come in a box with the CD in a back flap and will delight all those who love the act of drawing. Price: $5,500; the prints are available individually as well for $250 apiece.