Determining errors in chronology
Part of a series focusing on the memories of unknown subjects, this painting presents an anachronism: a wall sconce that has been retrofitted with lightbulbs and wired with electricity.
Deffet painted this image from a video still sourced from a found VHS tape of an unknown family’s vacation to a kitschy, Wild West tourist trap. This sentiment of a bygone era aligns with Deffet’s interest in seeking footage from obsolete media, as he records the past with a similar intention as the anonymous person’s original film.
Stephen Deffet’s paintings exist as a record of his observations of images, becoming an act of both memorial and self-documentation. Taken from anonymous home videos, the sourced photos Deffet uses in his paintings revive the lost memories of these creators. Removed from their original histories by the artist, these images leave it up to the viewer to imply and manifest their narratives.
Stephen Deffet builds paintings out of abandoned moments and jilted spirits. Deffet follows his natural tendency as a voyeur to salvage images and videos lost by others. Sourced from the internet and thrift stores, strangers’ vacations, celebrations, and holidays get adopted as commodified memories. Ripped out of their original times and places, these images are revived as paintings so the artist can introduce them to the collective consciousness.
Stephen Deffet was born in 1993 in Columbus, OH, and currently lives in Brooklyn, NY. He received his BFA in painting and drawing from Ohio University in 2017.
Deffet has shown his work with Galerie Dengyun in Shanghai, China, PRP in Dallas, TX, and Below Grand in New York City, NY.
His work has also been featured in several publications, including èmergent magazine and Artmaze Magazine.