exhibition space committed to
making contemporary art accessible
MIKE CRONIN: Pleasure Craft
Pleasure Craft takes its name from racing yachts, this exhibition presents impeccably
rendered paintings of magnificent boats. Painted on sheets of plastic, these
works are far removed from the traditional maritime paintings you may know.
Cronin sees the yachts as signifiers of value, both economic and social. By
introducing these images, he invites questions about our society and the ever-changing
dynamics of wealth, status and identity. How we interpret these images say quite
a bit about who we are. To add further complexity, Cronin paints the images
on plastic sheets because doing so raises questions of value in art. Can paintings
on plastic be as valuable as those on fine Belgian linen? Is plastic a sign
of cheapness or innovation? Again, this depends on who you are. Cronin also
makes connections between the act of sailing and the act of painting. One parallel
is that both are simultaneously work and pleasure. Another is that both demand
a high level of accuracy and skill despite the challenging situations of a stormy
sea or a persnickety plastic surface. Lastly, in both cases, experience is paramount.
Mike Cronin’s work has been included in exhibitions at Carl Berg Projects,
Arena 1 and High Energy Constructs. He received an MFA from Claremont Graduate
University and a BA from Pitzer College, Claremont. Mike Cronin is currently
based in Orange County.