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(above) Portrait of the Artist, 2010, (detail) oil/wood panel, sandblasted glass, bolts, four 30″ x 30″ panels (overall 60″ x 60″)


Ken Aptekar toys with masterpieces from the past by using the history of art as his playground. He time-travels old paintings into the present by his sly repainting joined to his witty, disarming and intimate texts. Here’s the idea: Paintings are nothing on their own, they start to mean something only when you talk back to them. Aptekar’s work turns this conviction into paintings on wood panels over which he bolts glass sandblasted with text.

Ken Aptekar, BECAUSE I WANT TO, 2018, 35″ x 35″, oil/wood, sandblasted glass with lacquered letters, bolts
After Hyacinthe Rigaud, Portrait of Louis XV age five, c. 1715, Versailles, Chateau de Versailles