Homelessness in Noah Becker’s Eyes

Noah Becker is a Victoria, British Columbia based multi visual artist, jazz musician/ saxophonist, and a founder and publisher of international contemporary art magazine, Whitehot magazine.

“His paintings reveal fantastical worlds where time and space are suspended in an alternative reality. The artist depicts familiar icons in absurd configuration, offering a way commentary on the state of contemporary culture. His practice as an artist is multi-faceted, his ability as a painter is matched by his aptitude as a jazz musician”. (Kathleen Ritter, curator of How Soon is Now)

Becker is exposing Untitled Realms Series, both in drawings with pencil, pen, and oil on paintings in different sizes, from an 8.5”x 11” smallest to 48”x48” biggest. There is a sense of unity and equality within most of his works. For example, most of his drawings and paintings are done in a circle which signifies the earth, then Becker layers or overlaps his ideas within this circle which makes it more complex and abstract but recognizable. There are a lot of little details to notice, every time you look at them, you realize something new that you missed the last time. I had to watch his works few times in order to grasp the depth of them. Of course, Becker’s art pieces are presenting the social issues or events of our everyday life. For example, in his painting entitled homeless which is both drawn with pencil on paper and in another version, oil on canvas, he illustrates the reality of homelessness in our society/world which we see every day. A person who is sleeping on the bench, or made a shelter with boxes, a person who carries a buggy full of bottles, a person carrying a sign which might say: “hunger 4 food” or “need sum monee”. In his paintings he uses very bright colors. In the Homeless piece, he uses a bright light blue for the background then the circle (earth) in the centre presenting the homeless with these bright green, red, yellow, etc colors to capture the viewer’s attention. Becker’s perspective is to illustrate some of the social and political issues of the world.  Artworks such as Homeless, Slave vs. Master, War Scene, Poverty and Wealth are examples of social and political context.
Becker’s paintings and drawings are currently being exhibited at the Vancouver Art Gallery till May 3, 2009 as part of a new exhibition called How Soon Is Now that displays more than thirty local artists. These artists are presenting contemporary works of art in different media such as sculpture, video, audio, drawing, painting, architectural intervention, and site-specific projects and events. I highly recommend you to see it so you can get a sense of Becker’s idea and other artists as such.
Jaleh Fotoohi