Enrique Castrejon — Linear Dissection Series
Linear Dissection provides both a visual and conceptual definition for Enrique Castrejon’s approach to his drawings. He begins by appropriating photographic images, deriving them from varied sources, including personal photos, the gay lifestyle magazine Frontiers, and news stories in the Los Angeles Times. Human figures are extracted from the imagery and further “dismembered” into simplified masses, shapes that help the artist initiate his investigation into what he is seeing.
With clinical precision, Castrejon then abstracts “quantitative data” from the isolated forms by selecting a point along its circumference, measuring the distance between it and another point along the circumference, and drawing an outward line radiating from the initial point, where he annotates the distance and angle of the measurement between the two. This process is repeated obsessively until each form is encircled and nearly obliterated by data. In most cases, however, the overall image of articulated parts still somehow retains its representational capacity.
Measurement is the act or process of assigning numbers to phenomena according to a rule. For Castrejon, the concept of measurement provides order to ordinary experience, as well as local or global events, by translating them into data. Through his system of measurement, he proposes interconnectedness between peoples and events and suggests that the distance between local and global is a matter of scale rather than difference. Castrejon finds that even the kind of tragic event that words sometimes “fail to describe” can still be measured. His methodical approach allows the artist to represent sometimes difficult imagery of disaster, war, and chaos in an analytical manner.
Ultimately, however, as logical as any system may be, it can still fail. Castrejon does not perceive the failure of the data as negative. Rather, in its failure, his work transcends narrow meaning and, further, calls into question the specific social, political, economic, and discriminatory agendas that are often disguised by “objective” uses of data.
Enrique Castrejon is an artist based in Los Angeles. In 2008, he had a solo project at BANK Gallery, Los Angeles. His drawings and installations have been featured in exhibitions at the Outpost for Contemporary Art, the Armory Center for the Arts, the Torrance Art Museum, Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (LACE ), LA Art Core, SUPER SONIC, and in Ed Gomez’s traveling Gallery of Contemporary Art (GOCA).