Charley Friedman / Artist Statement

Exploring spirituality, national ethos and advertising, how they sculpt and manipulate subjective experience, Charley Friedman’s visceral narratives draw on models of humor from stand up comedy, one liner jokes, and cartoons to illuminate how humans rationalize belief systems. Through sculpture, performance, photography, drawing and video, Charley Friedman is interested how we internalize and filter the world through magical thinking, institutionalized religion and consumer culture….shaping rituals, values and even sacred items that reinforce our own egocentric world view. The work is psychological and pungent, with an underlying interest in eliciting emotion from the viewer, not the quick response of shock, but rather the kinds of emotions we remember from childhood. To this effect, to categorize something as authentic, artificial, fake, holy relic or even a work of art is a moving target: It is all equal in Friedman’s art.