Maximilian Toth at Good Children Gallery

December 11, 2010 – January 2, 2011

4037 St. Claude Avenue
Saturday - Sunday, 12 pm - 5 pm

Good Children Gallery has turned its space over to a series of P.1.5 collaborations between artists born and raised in New Orleans and artists who have moved here from other parts of the country and the world. The second two artists, in the series of six, are Lala Rascic and Max Toth.

Math Toth was born in New Orleans, LA. He received a BFA from Art Center, Pasadena and an MFA from Yale in 2006.

Toth makes large-scale canvases of sketchy figures on black backgrounds. His figures consciously suggest a process, a fast rendering of a moment by which the raw physicality of a line describes both the potential to uncover a narrative as well as the active presence of a narrator. Toth’s subject is an updated suburban folk lore, mostly invovling teenagers causing trouble. Like all myths they serve to soothe the uncertainties of those who tell and those who listen. Toth’s paintings aim to describe the narration from both points of view. 

Artist Statement
I make narrative work focused on the biographical and autobiographical snippets of my suburban upbringing. My stories focus on the liminal moments of youth that are within the coming of age moments recounted at every gathering and holiday to remind us of specific turning points and moments of overlapped experience that help create us as individuals and our views and beliefs. I attempt to find the germs of where these moments, often aggressive, begin; sparks of self-definition; the start of things that will become much more significant later. These stories move freely in time, truth, and morality keeping the past alive, informing the present and dictating the future. It seems that throughout history the same stories, arguably the same story, is being told and retold, only the punctuation and emphasis change. I have learned to ride a bike and had my first youthful carnal explorations in the same graveyard, which also boasts the bones of Louisa May Alcott, Thoreau, Emerson and Hawthorne.

My paintings are line based figurative works on a slate black ground. Chalk, pencil, paint, markers and pastels, with only specific color usage, alternate between detailed articulation and clouded abstraction. Making each story birthed from a celestial cloud like a planet that moves between its own defined edges and the cloud from which it came. The black space of the painting engulfs the viewer leading her from the specific singular event depicted to ones own experience and the familiar history of iconic images we have come to understand. We interweave the stories and characters with the influences we have come to know through church, movies, literature, cartoons, advertising, comic books and the works of old masters. The blackboard ground implies both a classroom lesson as well as an erasable surface upon which one can work out ideas, formulas, and balance equations. Or in short, attempt to make sense of what has been placed before them.

The images chosen often focus on those events particular to our most animalistic humanity— our physical and sensual interactions with each other and the world around us. It seems that this part of our humanity is what’s laid bare in the transitional moments of our lives when we molt our moral narrative and assumptions and strike out to find the boundaries of our new mythologies
How do you explain the beauty in watching a mailbox snapping off of its post and launching from the end of a bat in your hand while the car that carries you continues down the road?

2006 MFA, Yale University School of Art, New Haven, CT 2003 BFA, Art Center, Pasadena, CA 2001 BA, Trinity University, San Antonio, TX
2010 Fredericks & Freiser, “Little Beasts,” New York, NY
2008 Franklin Art Works, “The Insurgents,” Minneapolis, MN
2007 Fredericks & Freiser, “Until the Young Are Hatched, Fledged and Flown,” New York, NY
2010 Fredericks & Freiser, “I’ll Let You Be in My Dreams if I Can Be in Yours,” New York, NY
2008 Jim Kempner Fine Art, “People,” New York, NY
2007 Dallas Contemporary, Open Doors Expansion, Dallas, TX
Wadsworth Athenaeum Museum of Art, Connecticut Contemporary, Hartford, CT
Daniel Weinberg Gallery, “Block Party II: An Exhibition of Drawings,” Los Angeles, CA
2006 Fredericks & Freiser, “Sweets & Beauties,” New York, NY
Jack Tilton Gallery, “School Days,” New York, NY
2005 Yale University, “Works on Paper,” New Haven, CT
Paxico Gallery, “Bedwetter Magazine Issue Ten,” Los Angeles, CA
2004 Smith Gallery, “Endure BK,” Painesville, OH
Cartelle Gallery, “Deuce,” Venice, CA
2003 Art Center, “Space,” Pasadena, CA