Thursday, 28th July – Saturday, 13th August
TIME AND SPACE
Mclean orders his steak medium well. My father would kill me, he tells the waitress. The chef will probably think I’m from Sydney.
McLean’s mouth is drawn on flat like a brushstroke. His hands are coloured with paint. He looks like his pictures.
He tries to get a heater going. The waitress comes back to help.
The show is about what happens in the studio, he says. The sculptures are that: they’re covered in the grime of the studio. It’s that thing, like with a Braque still life: they’re really about studio life.
McLean’s studio is at the end of a long hallway that smells of turpentine. Little notes on floral paper come under the door complaining of this fact.
The studio is like a poorly kept diary. Dates are noted on the wall. Phone numbers are scribbled down or written in paint. His mother’s is in two places, just in case.
Much of this show was made on the phone, one hand working while the other held the receiver. It’s no coincidence that people think conversationally I’m a bit absent, McLean says.
The dimensions for LA Story II are written on the wall near the door, alongside a note reminding him to take the key. Up near the doorframe is says 1:30 Monday but there is no indication of what is to happen then.
On the floor are newspapers and catalogues and fruit tins full of brushes. The sculptures are swept together out of this. The drawings, too.
McLean says he might call the show Time and Space. He says he knows that will make him sound like a wanker, but it’s what he has at the moment: time and space.
I might call it Knock Knock, he says. Like the joke. But also because I knocked on Melbourne’s – oh you get it.
He says he wants everything to look like a Rembrandt. He says paper is where fun comes from. He says he wishes people would say his work has a sardonic playfulness.
I ate two dozen oysters yesterday, he tells the waitress. They did not make me sexually rambunctious, as you are sometimes told.