In mid 2005 as I was working on a new show for my gallery. My dealer at the time emailed me the following essay claiming D-Smoothy was the inspiration for the essay. After reading this article by Jerry Saltz in the Village Voice I felt sick to my stomach and did not leave my couch for 2 weeks.
In defense of the staggeringly radical act of really looking, the wildness of the imagination, and the limitlessness of pictorial invention, I propose a 48-month moratorium on the reproduction of photographs via overhead, opaque, or slide projectors in paintings (this means tracing too). Call this the Richter Resolution, the Polke Principle, or the Tuymans Rule. Whatever you call it, it means that photographs, film stills, snapshots, or whatever may be used as starting points, references, or inspiration, but for the next four years let's pretend there's a ban against the use of mechanical devices to replicate these images in paintings.
This is not a geezer rant about loss of skills, bad drawing, laziness, or cheating. I'm not trying to put the genie back in the bottle. Like brushes and rulers, projectors are tools. This is about how these tools are used, which lately has become unadventurous. I address this mainly to students and do so provisionally, not prescriptively or prohibitively. Basically, this is a celebration of artists who find original ways to use these devices and an indictment of those who have turned this type of depiction into a tedious tic.