Work on Monday: “Street Fightin’ Man @ 0:59 Seconds” by Kevin Teare

This week, Work on Monday (or should I say Tuesday—sorry I’m late) examines a large painting by East End painter Kevin Teare. Many artists create to a soundtrack of their favorite music, or even tunes to set the right mood, but Teare’s work has a more direct link to the rock and roll he so loves. In “Street Fightin’ Man @ 0:59 Seconds,” he has literally painted his stereo equalizer lights (or perhaps a digital version of the same component) at a specific moment in the beloved Rolling Stones song.

Work on Monday is a weekly look at one piece of art related to the East End, usually by a Hamptons or North Fork artist, living or dead, created in any kind of media. Join the conversation by posting your thoughts in the comments below and email suggestions for a future Work on Monday here.

Street Fightin’ Man @ 0:59 Seconds
Kevin Teare (b. 1951)
Oil On Linen
38 x 96 inches, 2011

Nearly a minute into the Rolling Stones’ “Street Fightin’ Man,” the music builds and Mick Jagger’s voice comes back, singing “Heeeey” in the first part of his lyric, “Think the time is right for a Palace Revolution.” It’s at that moment, just as the “Hey” begins, that Teare freezes the dancing lights and records them to his large linen “canvas.” Clearly he is a music lover and a fan of the Stones—what’s not so clear is his choice to paint this particular second of the song.

Was it the beauty in the lights? Is this moment when the vocals return significant to Teare? Is he asking his viewer to consider the line that comes next, or simply enjoy this momentary blip in the greater composition? It would be difficult to say for sure. Whatever Teare’s intention, his reverence for music is quite clear, and he’s found a novel way to communicate it through a stationary, visual medium. Formally, the painting’s mix of hard shapes and masked lines with more fluid and random applications is striking. Through his use of patina and subtle yet strong and varied color, Teare creates the feeling of something aged but vibrant. What could be more appropriate?

See more Kevin Teare’s work at kevinteare.com.

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