That pixilated grinning mug: a cartoon dog with shades. The glint of sunglasses pulled over dazed eyes, summed up by the prosaic words, “Deal with it.” Much like Poochie the Dog or James Dean before him, its disaffect is a catch phrase, an image, a meme. A blanket response. A favorite pair of jeans. Some fleeting statement to today. Twenty bedroom posters kissing one another. A kind of community: its blankness begets its communicability. Eerily poised, we traffic in a unique currency that allows for a receding presence, this catching recline into the cool.
“So, Sangfroid” presents four artists whose work coolly dissects and re-purposes our contemporary stoicism. Like sangfroid’s literal origin of “cold blood” in French, the works embody a detached agency that is as sexily blasé as it is powerfully subversive. Utilizing images, objects, and gestures, the work in So, Sangfroid queries that nebulous position often found sulking within a non-position. Not content with the poise of mere slackerdom, the artists here calmly hash out concerns the way glaciers flood small towns. Methodically and subtly, the work comments from the cool: instigating with the nagging insistence of so many footnotes, behind shades coughing through the study hall malaise, examining whatever; this rote sangfroid.