Mark Lang’s new paintings play on and with the history of art. Not only do these new paintings delight in the relativity of historical meaning, but they also integrate actual elements of paintings, personages and details as compositional props that are put in a new sequence or ordering of images and personages. The onlooker has a special sense that the museum gallery site is itself the spectacle and we are all just players on this stage that has come to be known as art. Art imitates life and vice versa.
There is art in Lang’s art and it is literally painted into the picture. An endless series of references to historically significant paintings and painters make you aware that you are participating in a kind of voyeuristic behavior
Entertaining and allusive, Lang’s appropriative style works in both directions. History draws on the present just as art in the past implied a certain future evolution. The question remains as to whose history and what lineage is represented. Does formal history somehow develop its own logic of historical imperative ? These new paintings entertain us with their own particular take on history and what art is, or could be.
John K. Grande, 2005