Matthew Chambers
Kathleen Herlihy-Paoli
Ami Tallman
Jacques Louis Vidal

May 23 - June 22, 2024

25 Jay St. 104 Brooklyn, NY 11201

Exhibition Checklist

Brackett Creek Exhibitions is pleased to share excerpts from interviews with the four artists in this exhibition:

What does it mean for a work to be a drawing versus a painting? Can a painting be a drawing or vice versa?

Matthew Chambers: There’s a Jean-Luc Godard quote that goes, “When you go to the cinema you look up and when you watch television you look down.” For me, it’s a distinction between paper or canvas and a distinction between working upright or working flat on a horizontal surface. Because I drew doesn’t make it a drawing and because I painted doesn’t make it a painting.

I’m interested in both painting and drawing but not particularly in challenging the boundaries or definitions of the mediums, and for the most part I find works that need to argue about what they are a bit boring. I’m interested in how I can bring together ideas to make Trojan horses, how do I create a lasting value. And those are art questions as opposed to drawing or painting concerns.

Do the works always start as drawings?

Ami Tallman: While not all of the works begin as drawings, mine is generally a drawing-based practice. Drawing is a kind of thinking for me, in the way that taking written notes during a lecture is a means of interpreting and committing to memory what one is hearing.

Can artists act as historians in their own right?

Ami Tallman: While I do not presume to speak on the capacities of artists in general, I have too much respect for the work of actual historians doing original research to suggest that what I am doing is equivalent. I am almost always responding to the academic or journalistic work of others, and drawing and painting is generally a means of attempting to make a more intimate connection with things I am learning from text and/or photographs. I often find it very difficult to anticipate what other people are going to do or think in general, and spend a lot of time mulling over questions of motives for things I find perplexing in the actions of others (and sometimes even myself) part of making a portrait of a historical figure is just giving myself some time to really mull over a person, to study their details, understanding of course that the study of a person’s face or posture is necessarily shallow in obvious ways, I am always seeking access to a kind of intuitive insight into their character that I imagine might accidentally be revealed by a fleeting expression, the way they’ve postured themselves in a room, the way they’ve addressed the camera. over the years I have taken many abortive trips down pseudo-scientific trails in search of insight into the minds of others: micro-expressions, body language analysis, etc. I don’t believe in phrenology or anything, but it is hard to escape an impression that some aspect of character imprints itself on a face over the course of a life—and people are so often liars it seems just as likely to be reliable as listening to what they have to say. I also do listen to what people say, and that does also have an effect on how I depict them.

However, while I make no claim to doing original historical work, when I am depicting my immediate surroundings, that is a kind of documentation of the present in service of historical work of the future. it is a sort of testimonial contribution to historical interpretations of the present, often responsive to the documentation I wish were available to me about events of the past which preoccupy me.

There are a lot of tactile & aesthetic details of events of the past to which I lack access which make me feel unable to properly know about things which took place in times I cannot see. the colors of things matter a lot to me—colors which I am largely compelled to imagine for events which preceded color photography. I often feel that I could understand deep and unspeakable aspects of moments from which I am fundamentally alienated if I knew the colors in the scene: the pallor of skin, the shade of a garment, the particular green of the landscape in which a scene was taking place.

Do you find drawing more than painting more conducive to depicting light and shadow?

Kathleen Herlihy-Paoli: I don’t see them as being different when considering light and shadow, the difference for me is how color is moved around on the surface. One is liquid and the other is solid, so I do use them differently, but I don’t see them differently.

What interests you subject-wise?

Kathleen Herlihy-Paoli: For painting, my subjects are more considered. They are generally a commentary or reaction to something, often political or social that is going on. For drawing, my subjects are more immediate, things in my scope of vision, usually interesting light hitting an object.

Is drawing like talking?

Jacques Louis-Vidal: I would say drawing is more like a potato than like talking. If creative thinking/art making is like cooking as a process, where innovation and tradition play an equal part as you presently do it, then drawing is like the potato. It has its own inherent properties, uses, flavors but it is infinitely mutable, and highly reactive to influence.

What is your relationship to the machine? To your hand?

Jacques Louis-Vidal: I hate my hand and am very insecure about its abilities. I have spent my whole life trying to draw exactly how I think I should without any clear vision of what that is, so that insecurity has become a quality of the drawing itself, maybe the defining quality. I’m interested in how immediately I accept the way a machine draws, how understanding I am about its flaws (which are many), and how willing I am to help it along, also how unspecific an expectation I have about how it should draw. So, in short, I have a kind of domineering critical view of my own hand, and a kindly nurturing view of my plotter, you could say I treat my hand like it should know better and a machine like it is innocent.

Jacques Louis Vidal

Kathleen Herlihy-Paoli

Ami Tallman

Matthew Chambers


Matthew Chambers was born in Boise, ID in 1982. Solo exhibitions include shows at UNTITLED, New York; Zabludowicz Collection, London; Rental, New York; Angstrom Gallery, Los Angeles; Praz-Delavallade, Los Angeles; Zach Feuer Gallery, New York and Feuer/Mesler, New York. He has been included in group exhibitions including the Saatchi Gallery, London; Hezi Cohen Gallery, Tel Aviv, Israel; Marlborough, Madrid, Spain; Brand New Gallery, Milan, Italy; and The Rubell Family Collection, Miami, FL. Chambers lives and works in Bozeman, MT.

Kathleen Herlihy-Paoli (b. 1956, grew up in Westport, CT) lives and works in Missoula, MT. She earned her BFA from Skidmore College. Her solo exhibition Act Three traveled to the Jackson Hole Center for the Arts in Wyoming; Missoula Art Museum, Missoula, MT; The Emerson, Bozeman, MT; Paris Gibson Museum in Great Falls, MT; Holter Museum of Art, Helena, MT; and MonDak Heritage Center, Sidney, MT. She had a solo exhibition at Marinaro Gallery in New York, NY in 2022 and has an upcoming solo exhibition at the Taube Museum of Art in Minot, ND. She has also been included in group exhibitions at White Columns, New York, NY; Tang Teaching Museum, Saratoga Springs, NY; and Museo d’Arte Moderna, Sassoferrato, Italy.

Ami Tallman lives and works in Los Angeles, CA. She has exhibited in Los Angeles, New York, Berlin, and San Francisco. She holds a BFA from the San Francisco Art Institute and an MFA from ArtCenter College of Design. For the last several years she has been unhoused, making camp along the LA River and in Elysian Valley. Her work reflects her engagement with both her everyday life and the history of power, violence, and politics.

Jacques Louis Vidal (b. 1982, Paris France) lives and works in New York, NY. He received his BFA from The School of the Museum of Fine Arts Boston in 2004, and his MFA in Sculpture from Yale University in 2009. His solo exhibitions include In the Project Room: Underground Posterz, Broadway Gallery (New York, NY), Dead End Jobs That Kill, Harkawik (New York, NY), Boy Brain Firstdominoignite, Harkawik (Los Angeles, CA), Perfect Strangers, Andrew Rafacz (Chicago, IL), In a Whole Mine, 247365 (New York, NY), Games People Play, Marc Jancou Contemporary (New York, NY), Wood Folks is Good Folks, Sean Horton Gallery (New York, NY). Recent group exhibitions include Unraveling, Hesse Flatow (New York, NY), Cosmic Joke, Safe Gallery (Brooklyn, NY), Hot House, KnowMoreGames (Brooklyn, NY), and Rive Gauche/Rive Droite, Marc Jancou Contemporary (Paris, France), and Maximal Minimal, Primopiano (Lugano, Switzerland). He runs the project space La Kaje along with Kate Levant. He will be curating the next exhibition at Brackett Creek in Montana, opening June 29, 2024.