Fortuna by Gordy Grundy at Sala Diaz
On view through October 16
When I walked into Gordon Grundy’s Sala Diaz show
Fortuna and saw all of the framed graphic design work, I thought for a
moment, “Is this some ‘best-of’ show
for advertising? A Harrod’s of London promotional package?” But
upon further investigation—and since Sala Diaz wouldn’t do
such a thing—I
knew there had to be some “hidden meaning” behind it all.
The show’s main impression is part-country club paraphernalia (crests and
trophies), part-banal self-improvement jargon and part-religion of art. By all
appearances the work was made slick by means of commercial media, but the polish
revealed some tongue-in-cheek joking—like the crested white hotel
bathrobe and the Fortuna Yacht Club poster.
To really get the idea of what Mr. Grundy has put together, visit his
website www.fortunanow.com where this work was generated and can be viewed
Mr. Grundy (Fortuna’s Viceroy) stands not only as the head of The Fellowship
of Fortuna (a.k.a. The Church of Chance), but as the proprietor of works that
resemble our culture’s self-aggrandizing propensity to give awards, produce
difficult-to-obtain designer labels and create “blue chip” trophies.
In a sense, the show is about fine art regalia.
One piece that stood out was an award to Linda Pace (philanthropist,
artist and founder of ArtPace). I assumed upon viewing this work that
it was sarcastic,
but heard later it is sincere. And why not? That’s what the whole show
is about. It’s about make believe and “hey, let’s give away
a make believe award.” Its done with an anyone-can-be-a-member spirit that
says “This Bud’s for you!” With all the luck coming out of
this show it reads as a modern day temple to the Roman deity Fortuna. Go in and
you’re bound to find success…or at least its glitziest and
most trivial accoutrements.
Overall, the show is both redundant and creative. There are many ways
to oversell a concept. That’s the idea behind the display—redundancy—like
the over-saturation of Oscar night. Plus, there is this element of fine
art clubbiness that smacks of a designer label and is also funny.
I could picture this congested art atmosphere out in California. Fortuna
would seem necessary there as an invented emotional outlet for dealing
with art world
experts, Grand Holy Art Masters and Royal Museum Boards of Governorships.
call a spade a spade, right?
On Mr. Grundy’s other website, www.gordygrundy.com, he puts things into
perspective. Fortuna is entertaining, whether situated on a computer monitor
or a gallery. After all what’s the difference between their false
On First Friday, October 7, 2005, at Sala Diaz, artist Gordy Grundy,
a representative of the Fellowship of Fortuna, will present Linda Pace
with an award that designates
the San Antonio art patron as a "Paragon of the Fine Arts." This award,
the first of its kind, is presented to outstanding individuals in the Fine Arts
who “set a shining example for others to follow.” As inscribed upon
the plaque, “This year, we celebrate the Ten Year Anniversary of Artpace.
[Pace’s] creation has become a local landmark and an international