Another Total Failure of Language

Tuesday, June 21 through Sunday, June 26 2011

The Dover – 901 6th AVE #309 Seattle WA 98102

Artist Reception: Tuesday, June 21

5 – 10pm

Another Total Failure of Language is Seattle-based artist NKO’s look at his past year dealing with a traumatic brain injury. In NKO’s first solo show in five years the artist examines themes of miscommunication, misinterpretation, mumbles, whispers, and interior voices through painting, drawing, and installation.

On June 5th 2010 NKO was admitted to Harborview after a bike accident. 12 days later, he awoke with no memory of what happened, unable to speak, with his head cut open and a tube in his lung. This series of drawings and paintings deal with the deep depression and isolation that followed, and act as a catalyst for overcoming this traumatic event through visual and physical exorcism.


The works, which are primarily executed on sticker vinyl applied to glass, cardboard, and paper are almost exclusively on recycled, up-cycled, or found materials. The  materials, including spray paint, ink, and white out emphasize the tension between transience and the desire for permanence in our expressions and lives.

Words are layered, repeated, obscured, unreadable. These paintings and drawings struggle to reconcile the ephemeral core of language with the statements and artifacts they embody. After emerging from the hospital, NKO struggled with aphasia – an impairment of language ability ranging from problems remembering words to loss of speech – words weren’t where they were supposed to be, and their meaning was elusive, uncertain.

Another Total Failure of Language is installed in the artist’s former home, in the Dover Apartments. This show, with it’s deeply personal portrait of a struggle with depression and, at times, madness, is framed by the architecture which encapsulated it.


Please join the artist for a reception Tuesday, June 21st from 5 – 10pm. Viewing after the reception is by appointment – please contact the artist at flyawayone@gmail.com to arrange a time.