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With work that suggests the influence of the Italian Conceptualist movement, Arte Povera, George Herold is best known for his installations and sculptures, composed of quotidian objects and materials, like bricks, bottles, and mattresses. But it is in the caviar paintings, which the artist has been creating since the 1980s, that Herold encapsulates the ultimate mood of his informal abstraction.
The use of caviar is of duplicitous significance for Herold. Caviar is dually a luxury commodity and a perishable good, a paradox Herold toys with in the oleaginous sheen of his paintings: both enticing, yet bespattered.
In this painting Herold’s use of caviar freckles the canvas, adding a texture otherwise difficult to replicate in ordinary paints. Smears of yellow underpin the caviar at places on the canvas, stains from the foodstuff that appear as deliberate as if they were formed by paint. The indexicality of this artistic practice corroborates Herold’s artistic outlook: to achieve ambiguous conditions that allow for a multitude of interpretations.