Carrying the Angel to the People

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    Photo: Stephen Pitkin/Pitkin Studio
Paint and wood, on wood
80 x 49 inches
Collection of
Souls Grown Deep Foundation

Almost every day, Young would search the streets of Overtown for materials to incorporate into his artwork. Young's paintings are more than paintings. They are assemblages made from an array of urban detritus carefully selected by the artist according to his sense of their aesthetic and philosophical compatibility. His haul may include plywood, broken furniture, mirrors, window shades, carpet scraps, splintered wood, metal trays, record albums, wallpaper samples, glass, and paper-correspondence, manila folders, bank statements, bills, memos—thrown away by small manufacturing plants and offices still remaining on the fringes of the community. The materials are chosen for more than texture, color, and form; Young considers each object's original use, and in his final creation—gathered, selected, arranged, nailed or glued together, painted, and framed—each component carries its own subtle and highly esoteric definition. A finished Young work, particularly a large-scale one, is often a combination of painted surface—or several painted surfaces—and a highly original frame, usually of wood fragments, that are often painted themselves. Everything is joined together collage-style. The final product reflects immediacy and spontaneity, like the music that is probably playing nearby. "I listen to old rock, jazz, blues. A melody is what you listen to, to get new ideas."