Ken Cro-Ken, is an earthwork artist, though the materials that he uses are not the usual: rocks, soil, or other tangible earth materials.The greater focus of his art is the invisible, unseen forces that shape and mold all things in the universe.One can consider this art to also be Atmospheric or Eco-System Art that reveals an intriguing dynamic between matter and "non-matter". These paintings are made in above and below freezing, high and low altitude to become more sensitive to things around him. Therefore, Ken must strike a balance between the inner and outer self to create his art as he learns about paint and nature simultaneously. By mixing paints and catalysts, Cro-Ken sets his Speed Element paints into motion to mimic the push-pull forces to create microscopic and satellite views of the earth and places scattered throughout the universe. Ken says, “These paintings are “abstracts waiting to be called realistic, when technology catches up”.
Cro-Ken, based in Manhattan for over 20 years, has both an indoor studio (on Park & 30th), and an outdoor roof garden studio (in the East Village); and paints in all weather conditions. Cro-Ken said that he personally loves summer but professionally he is most excited in winter; making below freezing paintings that suspends a paint experiment over greater periods of time. The same paints, ingredients and movements will produce very different visual results if painted in different places and seasons. These “reactive improvisations” force Cro-Ken to anticipate images and places in advance of their actual appearance. Basically, what he does is manipulating space, time and matter… the matter in his case is paint. If it's snowing in Manhattan and Ken is in town, you can be sure that he is bundled up on the roof garden studio, setting snow paintings into motion and video documenting the "paint happening". Whether the paint experiment be sped up in very hot weather or slowed down in below freezing temperatures, a painting “comes to rest”. Many images elude capture by the canvas but no the video camera. Therefore, it would be more accurate to call a painting that comes to rest a “painted” and it is the video that could best be considered the “painting”.
EXHIBITION HISTORY- Auckland and Christ Church, New Zealand; Linz, Austria; Budapest, Hungary; Boston, Massachusetts; Pittsburgh, Pa.; Long Island, Manhattan & Brooklyn, N.Y.; Chatham, New Jersey;Santa Barbara, San Diego, San Francisco, California; Washington D.C. and St. Petersburg, Florida