Jason Adkins: You Had It Coming / New Sculpture and Painting / 2008

October 11 –November 8, 2008 Opening reception Saturday, October 11th 5-8pm

Western Project is proud to present the debut exhibition by Los Angeles artist, Jason Adkins.  An MFA graduate of Claremont Graduate University in 2003, Adkins will present large paintings and sculptures; abstract landscapes and painted “cages.”  His paintings are made of a series of small gestural markings; horizontal fields of monochromatic color.  The familiarity of the compositional structure and the absence of natural elements of reference result in unsettling, yet zen-like images.  His use of color is specific - blazing pink or orange, or solid gray – artificial hues uncommon in traditional landscape depiction.  Utilizing a minimal vocabulary and synthetic color, Adkins creates a luminescent void; land and/or seas extending into forever.  The images question: are these the first or the final landscape images, are they images of the ultimate destruction or first creation, is this the past or the future, and are they external worlds or the internal realm?

Additionally, Adkins’ “cage” sculptures set a similar tone with different materials.  Large structures made from MDF wood and oil lacquer paint suggest barred enclosures.  Human scale, the open frameworks also recall the reductive language of Sol Lewitt and Carl Andre.  And they are very much akin to Peter Halley’s prison or cell paintings from the 1980s, which referenced human confinement and systems of power.  While there is an element of the sinister, Adkins under cuts it again with the use of color and classic structure.