October 20 – December 22, 2012Opening reception for the artist: Saturday, October 20th 6-8pm
Western Project is proud to present the third solo exhibition by Los Angeles artist Cole Case. Culled from two years of observing and drawing on site, the artist has created a body of work both eclectic and incisive. Intuitively traveling to locations throughout Southern California, Case has found the extraordinary in the familiar: cement river beds, high desert landscape, or sunflowers arranged in left over plastic water bottles. Beginning with small ballpoint pen and wash drawings, the artist uses his primary information (much as the Hudson River School artists) in his studio as notes to create a new vision of his experience. Different from the Impressionists and California Plein Air painters who made their paintings on site, Case uses iPhone and iPad app technology to isolate and match specific color elements.
Southern California has been a subject long attractive to artists such as David Hockney, Ed Ruscha or John Divola, each using landscape as the vessel or context for ideas. Unlike the many faux Hockney stylists, it is Case’s drawn line which enlivens his pictures with a distinctly subjective language and voice. It is the signature flow of his hand into elegant forms, countered by immediate swaths of paint that give the work a pleasurable and carnal urgency. His landscapes are void of human presence, each a stage for the mind’s projections. Case’s floral still life works continue a traditional lineage from Dutch masters to Manet to Warhol – some even on a Warhol museum-scale at nine by seven feet.
Landscape, water, and flowers provide a perfect mirror for the human psyche and have for hundreds of years as sensual traps for reflecting beauty, mortality, brevity or fear. Case uses the tactile and physical qualities of paint to engage the senses and his subject matter as a construct for language of emotions; bridging visual experience to classic themes.
Case has recently been included in The Painted Desert at the Lancaster Museum of Art and History, curated by Andi Campognone, and Underground Pop at the Parrish Art Museum in Southampton, New York, curated by David Pagel. He has shown at Howard House in Seattle, Washington; University of California Irvine, Irvine, California; Cypress College Art Gallery, Cypress, California and the Luckman Gallery at California State University, Los Angeles, among other venues.
For information and images, contact the gallery at 310-838-0609 firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com
By Holly Myers August 3, 2012, 5:33 a.m.
The most striking thing about the work in “I Am Katrina,” Jessica Wimbley’s solo debut at Western Project, is how peculiar it is. True visual weirdness of the sort that jolts one into paying attention, if for no other reason than because it eludes the standard channels of qualitative association, is rare enough in any artist still within a stone’s throw of graduate school. (Wimbley earned her MFA at UC Davis in 2005.)
It is all the more impressive in this case, given the well-trodden (if worthy) nature of Wimbley’s themes — identity, history, colonialism, diaspora, the gaze — and the clumsily democratic character of her medium, digital collage.
The works, all basically photographic, revolve around a young, black, female figure in a beaded necklace and a burlap sarong: the artist in the role of a quasi-mythical character named Katrina. Based loosely on the legend surrounding Marie Thérèse Coincoin, a freed slave in colonial Louisiana who became a land-owning entrepreneur, Katrina is an enigmatic but powerful presence, floating through Wimbley’s world with the air of a prophet or sorceress.
The weirdness lies largely in the world itself: a lush, cluttered, spatially disjointed milieu filled with bamboo forests, shanty architecture and traces of a ubiquitous yellow brick road, overlaid with patterns from Navajo blankets and designer textiles, images of American soldiers, Depression-era bread lines, suburban mansions, police violence protest posters, New Orleans’ flooded 9th Ward, a cherubic flock of distraught Haitian children, microscopic DNA, and garish illustrations of the universe.
Whether the pieces “work” or not is difficult to say. They’re ungainly and awkward and littered with strange compositional glitches, but all more captivating for it.
Western Project, 2762 S. La Cienega Blvd., Los Angeles (310) 838-0609, through Aug. 11. Closed Sunday and Monday. www.western-project.com
Copyright © 2012, Los Angeles Times
For immediate release:
I Am Katrina : Photographs and Collages
July 14 – August 18, 2012 Opening reception Saturday July 14th 6 – 8pm
Western Project is proud to present the first solo exhibition by Jessica Wimbley. An MFA graduate from the University of California at Davis (2005), the artist lives and works in Claremont California. Her bold new series, I Am Katrina delves into a myriad of cultural and personal territories: issues of identity, history, diaspora, class, integration, mobility, and narrative. Moreover, the series asks: Whose gaze is this? What is the American Dream and who has access to it? What is Homeland? What is origin, what is the macrocosm, what are shifting observations? Using images from numerous sources, her photographs and collages posit these questions in metaphor and allegory, setting up new and poetic narratives. Utilizing original images shot on location in Louisiana combined with internet and media searches along with the vision of other artists and scientists (biochemist Dr. Mona Monfared), the work is collaged and manipulated, integrating many avenues into a collective voice and expansive gaze.
Wimbley uses the Louisiana Creole legend of Marie Therese Coincoin (1742 – 1816), as a starting point of wisdom, beauty and freedom – ideals which form and become the figure of Katrina in her narratives.
Katrina serves as a figure that observes, participates, prophesizes, bares witness, conjures and creates narrative in the work- she serves as the gaze and holder of metaphor- serving as a Wild Seed/ Parable of the Sower sci-fi, integrated Octavia Butleresque marker of change.
In the work, Their Ears Were Listening to God, the artist photographs herself as Katrina using Biblical tropes such as the burning bush with images of explosions and volcanic eruptions. The bamboo along the Cane River serves as a cosmic Garden of Eden where she is engaged in creating; a vessel and holder of consciousness, an observer moving through time and space.
Wimbley shifts microcosm and macrocosm, juxtaposing images of DNA gels and African hair follicles with constellation and star-cluster images; referencing history, travel and metaphorically, the migration of peoples across the planet travelling towards a home or freedom.
Popular culture symbols expand her narratives with the use of designer fabric images (Burberry, Louis Vuitton) pointing to status and class. The yellow brick road from the film, The Wizard of Oz appears frequently as a metaphor for the diaspora experience. In I Am.., Wimbley uses scenes from the hurricane-flooded 9th Ward in New Orleans with child survivors from the Haitian earthquake – Katrina’s gaze is blinded by the storm’s vortex; she is the duality of part and whole, watcher and participant.
Regarding conceptually structured works such as Rug, Wimbley writes:
Rug uses the pattern of a Navajo Rug as a system relating ideas of history and origin, the construction of narrative both figuratively and literally within the digital medium, linking the construction of gaze, and history to the building the pieces of a puzzle, of pattern, but serves also as a sort of tapestry to what is underneath origin narrative.
Ideas about the origin of humanity, creation and the formation of history expand and intersect in Wimbley’s vision; time is traversed and multiple stories are mitigated and gathered from our digital universe. Crucially the work asks: Who is seeing? Perhaps the gaze is both intimate and cosmic, an ultimately mysterious authorship.
Jessica Wimbley has been included in exhibitions at the Athens Institute of Contemporary Art in Athens Georgia, California State University at Long Beach, California, National Palace of Culture/Lessedra Gallery in Sofia, Bulgaria, 21st Century African Youth Movement, Sierra Leon, Africa, and other galleries and institutions in the United States.
For information and images, contact the gallery at 310-838-0609 firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com
New Paintings and Drawings May 19 – July 7, 2012 Opening reception Saturday May 19th 6-8pm
Western Project is proud to present the first major Los Angeles exhibition of works by Brian Porray. Now a resident of Claremont, California, the artist paints and collages large-scale works influenced by his twenty-plus years on the neon streets of Las Vegas:
This work is sort of like the psychedelic memory of a psychedelic memory. All of these pieces are focused solely on the Luxor hotel in Las Vegas, an enormous black pyramid shaped mega-resort that was built during my first year of high school. Since I wasn't old enough to party on The Strip, my experience of Las Vegas at night was as a neon backdrop for chemically enhanced desert parties. I vaguely remember standing in the dirt staring up at the beam of light shooting out of the Luxor's peak - - after a minute my eyes adjusted and I could almost make out what looked like huge black bats swarming around the top of the pyramid. The light didn't dissolve the way a flashlight does - it was so much brighter. It felt solid, like I could climb up through it. I hadn't really looked at the light until that night, and I remember being terrified - - psychologically it totally fucked me up.
The Luxor and its beacon are central themes in this body of work as a point of conceptual origin; the triangle is the basic unit of formal organization and composition. In the 1990’s the Luxor hotel in Las Vegas was seen as a premier example of post-modern architecture; the black glass pyramid intentionally recalling the history of other desert pyramids. As pure architectural artifice on the Vegas Strip, the Luxor created an ominous, but transformational experience for the artist.
--(\DARKHOR5E/)-- is a convoluted universe of spaces/atmospheres/images; conversely, made with economic means: painted, drawn, slashed and pasted together. Most of the works have a central point, radiating outwards, breaking space into a multitude of micro worlds and patterns. The notion of traditional grid space is usurped by triangular shapes which explode and multiply in myriad possibilities, as though science and technology have crashed and burned into a formal and toxic landscape. The artist also uses drawing and printing to reproduce or replicate motifs of space, all heavily collaged on canvas. The images can not be taken in by the human eye all at once due to the multiplicity of forms. Formally tied to the 1960’s Op art of Bridget Riley, Porray’s constructions move sideways and contrary: compositions burst with seeming chaos while bound together in a kind of Buckminster Fuller / tweaker architecture.
The work plays notions of ornamentation, systems, and orderliness into unexpected corners; humorous, apocalyptic and radiant. His vision is not of an organic nature, but conceptual, mathematic realms. While some of his geometric patterning mirrors folk art quilts, they also recall the futuristic films, Brazil and Blade Runner, yet any somberness is eradicated as the artist seems to have hacked Matisse’s color wheel to animate the darkness.
Using cyberspace language: leet or leetspeak (once an obscure language of computer geeks and hackers) to title his works, Porray melds notions of the digital and material worlds; techno language as a code to point to or locate objects and more, essence. In --(\DARKHOR5E/)-- , the veil has dropped, the acid too, and so the definitions we hold precious: now we see.
Brian Porray’s work was recently acquired by the Frederick R. Weisman Foundation, Los Angeles; he is a 2012 Fellow at the Bemis Center for Contemporary Art, Omaha, Nebraska; and a previous recipient of the Joan Mitchell Foundation Grant in 2010. Brian's work has appeared in New American Paintings #84, and #87. He was included in ‘Spectrum’ at the W. Keith and Janet Kellogg University Art Gallery, Cal Poly Pomona, California, and has shown at Tomkins Projects, Brooklyn, New York, Trifecta Gallery in Las Vegas, and Sheppard Fine Arts in Reno, Nevada. Porray is an MFA graduate of the University of Las Vegas.
Brian Porray is an MFA graduate of the University of Las Vegas, and lives and works in Claremont, California.
For information and images, contact the gallery at 310-838-0609 firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com
For immediate release: John Schlue: New Paintings
January 7 – February 11, 2012 (West Room) Opening reception for the artist: Saturday January 7th 6-8pm
Western Project is proud to present the first solo exhibition by John Schlue in the West Room. A native of Belle Plaine , Iowa, Schlue brings a particularly American sensibility to his paintings. Though abstract, his geometric imagery presents both a spiritual and Pop kind of fusion. Using concentric circles and squares, his works recall garish neon road signs and psychedelic strobe lights. The paintings are made with oil paint and canvas, and are thrown sideways by his use of felt. It is his merging of fine art materials and craft products which is visually difficult to synthesize as it is unique and seamless. Some of the works are concave by the built up frame of hundreds of pieces of felt. Schlue’s use of materials speaks to a long tradition of American crafts, quilt makers and also contemporary artists such as Billy Al Bengston and Olafur Eliasson, and the recent works by Robert Irwin. Schlue’s imagery of radiating light is a metaphor for both cultural technology and spiritual vision. Like his mixing of disparate materials, the fusion of external and internal sources is the duality of our time. Akin to Buddhist mandala symbols, his optical images pulsate with the stillness and vigor of life; the balance of opposites as one.
John Schlue lives and works in Los Angeles. He has shown recently at Feral Pop Up in Joshua Tree, Truxtop Gallery and Western Project in Los Angeles, and the University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa.
For further information and images contact the gallery at 310-838-0609 or firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
For immediate release:
CHAD ROBERTSON: Disparate Collectives New Paintings
September 10 - October 8, 2010 Opening Reception: Saturday, September 10, 6:00 - 8:00 PM
Western Project is proud to present Los Angeles artist Chad Robertson with a new group of paintings entitled, Disparate Collectives. Following his previous Mash-Up works, the artist continues his interest in music and implied narratives. Looking to create a ‘visual piece of music’, Robertson uses imagery from his travels around the globe, a picture from the news that caught his attention, old photographs, etc. He writes: The images become the words of a lyric or the sentence. It sets the scenario for the viewer to put together a story, but it’s important that it is their story. Robertson holds up a ‘mirror’ of events and objects in the world around us; layering political events, natural disasters, intimate physicality and the minutia of life. He presents a cacophony of experience as a frozen moment, as to witness; capturing the notion of evolving histories, and the ever changing, growing and moving world around us. Influenced by De Kooning and Rauschenberg’s ideas of ‘all-overness’, and particularly Rauschenberg’s abandonment of pictorial hierarchy, Robertson treats his images equally, employing a similar layering and patterning to imply the interconnectedness of events occurring. It is a conceptual as well as philosophical view: no hierarchy equals all happening, all together.
Robertson: My experience going to Africa and my ongoing personalconnections that I have there now really bring the continent into the first world in my mind. It shares a space in my conscious now, thereforesharing space in my paintings.
As our world is more technologically connected than any time in human history, his paintings imply the shift in awareness of possibilities,
the multiple layers of consciousness existing, and the simultaneity of the internal and external worlds. As Rauschenberg’s later works developed analogies between visual arts and music, Robertson’s narratives are visual songs of contemporary life: operatic, reflective and universal.
Chad Robertson has exhibited previously in Munich, Stockholm, Chicago, San Francisco, Seattle, and at Sixspace in Los Angeles.
Using bold planes of color, Johnson reaffirms the tradition of Southern California hard edge painting for this millennium. Aware of predecessors such as Karl Benjamin, and John McLaughlin, and their interest in landscape and the environment, the artist moves hard edge towards a more Pop language; flat planes of intense color merging and moving against another, shifting stratas of atmosphere and light echo the intersections of urban culture and nature. His influences are historic, from Matisse to Howard Hodgkin to Jeremy Blake’s videos....
Tracey Harnish, Huffington Post, July 27, 2011
Photorealism does not especially intrigue me, but in Patrick Lee's work, the technique is just the starting point for further revelations. Lee's graphite portraits of men are meticulous down to the very pores that sprout whiskers. The figures are set in a style reminiscent of the early 1900s, with heads floating in a limbo of whiteness, and I am reminded of the decades old black and white photos of my grandmother's family. Yet these portraits are startling contemporary insights into the society of men. Bald heads, scars, tattoos and ethnically diverse, these men virtually wear the stories of their lives on their necks, faces, and heads. In a culture where youth is trumpeted no matter the class or color of the individual, it's an interesting relief to see men, instead of kids, depicted here. These are men who clearly have lived lives of intensity and peril and are part of a society that signals their wounds with physical visuals.
The story of each image reads masculine and macho, yet with the squint of an eye or the tilt of a head, vulnerability is suddenly revealed. Not only is a personal story told, but a sliver of our society is laid bare as well.
One of the standout pieces is an image of the back of a shaven head, where a large puckering scar curls from the top of the head and ends at a big protruding ear. This declaration of violence survived is like the map of a life, one that most gallery goers are familiar with only through film and TV. By making this image worthy of a portrait, a portrait being something remembered, valued, and even passed down to future generations; it becomes a testament to the continuation of life.
Opening Reception: Saturday, July 30, 6:00 - 8:00 PM
Western Project is proud to present new paintings by Los Angeles artist, Dion Johnson. Using bold planes of color, Johnson reaffirms the tradition of Southern California hard edge painting for this millennium. Aware of predecessors such as Karl Benjamin, and John McLaughlin, and their interest in landscape and the environment, the artist moves hard edge towards a more Pop language; flat planes of intense color merging and moving against another, shifting stratas of atmosphere and light echo the intersections of urban culture and nature. His influences are historic, from Matisse to Howard Hodgkin to Jeremy Blake’s videos. Los Angeles’ miasma of roadside billboards and architecture inspire his use of commercial color, blending the synthetic cityscape into abstract forms; our social artifice transformed in to an optical aesthetic. The paintings are composed on the computer and conversely drawn and made by hand. His flat radiant colors recall the 1960’s work of Lorser Feitelson and many of Johnson’s dynamic compositions bring to mind Morris Louis’ pour paintings from the same era. Most profoundly, Johnson’s use of color exemplifies the sensation of life in Southern California; an eternal summer, not as cliché, but as experience; a vivid clarity, a richness of life, a balance of sweet and sour, in complete abundance.
Johnson has shown at the Rebecca Ibel Gallery in Columbus, Stephen Stux Gallery, New York, Carl Berg Gallery and Richard Heller Gallery in Los Angeles, James Kelly Contemporary in Santa Fe, Torrance Art Museum, and other galleries and museums across the US.
For immediate release:PATRICK LEE Drawings and Video June 18 – July 23, 2011
Western Project is proud to present the second solo exhibition by Los Angeles artist Patrick Lee. After a successful show in New York last year, the artist will present seven recent large scale drawings and a new video project. His continuing series, Deadly Friends, mines the transient and elusive definitions of masculinity. The artist has met and photographed hundreds of men on the streets of America over the past decade. Like a scientist, Lee has collects images of thousands of examples of physical attributes: scars, facial hair, tattoos, body muscle, talismans, etc. His primary interest is in the artifice off masculinity; the characteristics men acquire for money, sex, power and essential survival. Using photographs, Lee draws his subjects from numerous images; as composites or masks, using subtle or often times not subtle, physical traits and features.
It is Lee’s masterful draftsmanship which conveys his understanding of his subjects and the core issue of masculinity. Each image is hand drawn without Photoshop or digital assistance. Akin to a sculptor, the artist invests each facial pore and hair with microscopic detail so the image resonates as a complete emotional picture; an internal and external illumination. In the lineage of Chuck Close and Manet’s realism, Lee forges a contemporary investigation of class and gender roles. His conceptual drawings are compelling mirrors of our societal desire for alpha - heroic strength and control. Yet his subjects are not ideal figures for they embody other human traits such as pride, anger, or pain. As complex portraits, Lee’s images expose the illusion of ‘maleness’ as acquired, not necessarily inherent; external gender characteristics as ever changing and adaptable according to need; a game of adaption and replication to an end.
Lee is currently included in, Drawings for the New Century, at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. He has exhibited at Ameringer McEnery Yohe in New York, the Francis Young Tang Teaching Museum at Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, New York, the Weatherspoon Art Museum, Greensboro, North Carolina, Maureen Paley Gallery, London, and the Marc Selwyn Gallery in Los Angeles. He is in the collection of the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, Georgia and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas. He is also a recipient of the Peter S. Reed Foundation grant for 2006.
June 18 - July 23, 2011, West Room
Western Project is proud to present the first solo exhibition by Robert Doran in Los Angeles. Relocating from Chicago, the artist recently moved and set up his current studio in Southern California. Doran’s sculptural objects and paintings are personal and idiosyncratic works which echo historic precedents such as Ken Price, Karl Wirsum and Robert Gober. His interest in Shaker ideas of utopian living and the architecture of communitarianism clearly add to his use of everyday materials: clay, cement, paint and ink; seemingly a kind of neo folk art steeped in story telling, memory and meditative communication. Doran writes:
“I am interested in the power of objects. The ghosts that haunt the vessel, the architecture, the photograph, give me life. I see the it in things. It can be found in the form or fetish. It is carved or written. It is striking or ugly. But it is always there, in some way or another. The personal pronoun in art…..some of it portrays a character, a setting, or prop, while some of it supplies a form for contemplation…..to communicate universal histories, the impossibility of death, an ancestral purpose, and cross‐reference the metaphors of immediacy.”
His is a language of reductive forms, patterns or text, in combinations often resembling equations; a cross pollination of cultural imagery and icons. His paintings recall 1970’s graphic design and HC Westermann’s illustrative drawings. Doran’s sculptural objects of cast tree limbs, pumpkins and cowboy hats have a distinctly ‘western’ appearance yet reference objects such as Hindu lingams, pre historic cave inscriptions, or mythological figures. He is interested in creating new myths from a cosmology of influences; similar to the legend of Orpheus charming the world with his music, Doran looks to unlock the ethers and reveal narratives which surround us all.
Doran graduated from Columbia College in Chicago in 2000, has shown at Bucketrider Gallery and Roots and Culture in Chicago, The Baltimore Art Center in Baltimore, Maryland, galleries across the US including San Francisco, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Portland, and Copenhagen, Denmark and Tokyo, Japan. He has been an artist in residence at Ox-Bow School of the Arts in Saugatuck, Michigan, Bethanien Kunstlerhaus, Berlin, Germany and Columbia College in Chicago.
June 3, 2011 By David Pagel
"Wayne White's Sand Mountain Tractor at Western Project"
“Sand Mountain Tractor,” Wayne White’s comfortably crowded exhibition at Western Project, is a tour de force display of artistic virtuosity that is neither forceful nor particularly impressed with itself. Warmth and humility suffuse everything White touches, without taking the edge off of his ferociously funny and wickedly sympathetic sketches, drawings, paintings, sculptures and puppets.
Any one of the many mediums in which White works would provide enough material for a satisfying show. It’s common to visit exhibitions with far less going on than what transpires in the single vitrine filled with sketchbooks, all jam-packed with White’s doodles, studies and scribbles. And that’s the tip of the iceberg.
Five freestanding figures fill the gallery with a deliciously queasy combination of country bumpkin charm, avant-garde experimentation, childish whimsy and redneck menace. Made of snapped badminton rackets, broken brooms, a rooftop vent and a motorized pig chomping on a femur made of wood, White’s mutant scarecrows leave a lot to the imagination, and not much of it is pretty.
Eight marionette-size figures have the presence of cast-off talismans, their powers too skittish to provide succor with sufficient regularity.
Ten paintings are also at cross-purposes with themselves. Some seem to channel Paul Klee and Joan Miró only to be so put off by the potential pretentiousness that they pile on cartoon corniness.
White’s 27 drawings fall into four groups: labyrinthine networks that make a virtue of insecurity; spare collages interrupted by torn-up bits of cardboard; abstract figures with enough detail to be portraits; and dreamy landscapes that evoke the ghost of H.C. Westermann and the touch of William Wiley.
If all that weren’t enough, White has also included the stage, set and marionettes for a puppet show he and five assistants put on intermittently throughout the run of the exhibition. Loopy and loaded, its restaging of the Civil War can’t be beat.
Check out Mark Dean Veca's section of the 2011 COLA online catalog here: http://cola2011.lamag.org/veca/index.html
And more on the exhibition here: http://slamxhype.com/art-design/2011-c-o-l-a-exhibition-2/
[gallery link="file" columns="5"]
For immediate release:
Supersymmetry for SP33D FR34KS New Paintings and Drawings
May 7 – June 11, 2011
Western Project is proud to present the debut of paintings and drawings by Brian Porray. Having grown up in Las Vegas and also receiving his MFA from the University of Las Vegas, Porray spins his history and obsessions with science and technology, and a graffiti background into a formal and toxic language. Using paint, printed papers and tape on canvas and panels, the work appears heir to 20th century Futurists such as Balla, Severini and Boccioni. However, living in Las Vegas for twenty odd years provides a particular ‘western’ perspective as the artist notes:
“okay, so...i've been describing the work as a kind of astro-tweaker pastiche - meaning that i see it as describing a kind of hybrid techno-futuristic fucked-up landscape...one where our meanings and forms are derived from whatever piles of scrappy shit and detritus happen to be laying around
- - roll it up in a ball and light it on fire.
in a sci-fi post-apocalyptic type way, i think that we may do well to re-construct things around us with the formal attitudes of tweakers...slipshod with lots of duct tape and mountain dew, but also overly complex and highly sophisticated...i'm trying to describing this visually, so my paintings aren't really abstract at all, but more like psychedelic landscapes filled with broken technological assemblages -- they're like images of machines that have been stripped of any real function or meaning outside of their own visual complexity...kind of like looking at a car after it's been crashed.
basically, as things accelerate they become less and less stable - i like to make the work look as if it's about to meltdown or explode from it's own rapidly expanding architecture. everything in the work is suspect and corrupt - the op art-ish drawings are like snapshots of a system just before it collapses...i also like to say that as the variables in any given system increase, our understanding of that system escalates toward abstraction - - most of the work revolves around this central idea of simultaneously accelerated and attenuated scale. kind of how the stock market is an accelerated idea of the actual physical market - but the variables are huge and beyond calculation...so the images that i'm making don't describe facts, systems, or objects accurately – but in a much more obtuse and accelerated sense.....i think.
but also, i feel strongly that the work should have real visual consequence - like, it should be a real fucking trip to stand in front of...super active and maybe even a bit nauseating - but definitely not shy or passive...really crunchy and saccharine.
things that are grist for the mill: vegas/methlab decor/science fiction/psychedelic posters/the cramps/astronomy"
With a link to hard edge painting and Op art of the 1960’s, his voice veers and blends more accurately with the DYI legacy from the mid 1970’s: embrace all vices and virtues – possibly burn them down, and reconstruct them in a searing beauty; but transform them in to a more purposeful meaningful world. All bets are off but the game is surely and raucously on.
Brian Porray is a recipient of the Joan Mitchell Foundation Grant 2010. He lives and works in Claremont, California. His work has appeared in New American Paintings #84, and #87. He was recently included in ‘Spectrum’ at the W. Keith and Janet Kellogg University Art Gallery, Cal Poly Pomona, California, and has shown at Tomkins Projects, Brooklyn, New York, Trifecta Gallery in Las Vegas, and Sheppard Fine Arts in Reno, Nevada.
Daniel Brice at Western Project
April 14, 2011
By Christopher Knight
Abstract painting never looked more beat up, knocked down, abraded and used than it does in six otherwise eloquent new works by Daniel Brice. In all but one case, their simple Minimalist spatial geometry is enhanced by multiple panels which give material heft to the vaporously painted rectangular shapes.
The heavy burlap canvas glimpsed at the edges of these unframed works also adds to their rough-hewed quality.
Visually, predecessors of Brice's work at Western Project are as disparate as California's Richard Diebenkorn and Germany's Günther Förg, although Diebenkorn's origins in landscape and Förg's in Conceptual art don't seem to apply. Brice is a materialist.
"OX 5," a diptych with a layered, cobalt-blue rectangle slightly off-center, features a strip of white along the bottom and up one edge, and it's anything but pristine: The thin surface is dingy from under-paint. The crimson-and-white rectangular shapes in "OX 4" look to have been put through a ringer, while the edges of a thin blue stripe down the middle tell of masking tape gone awry.
It's as if abstraction, once enthroned on a critical Olympus, is hanging on by its fingernails -- and turns out lovelier for its tenacity. Painting's death has periodically (and even ritually) been claimed ever since the camera was invented more than 170 years ago. But Brice's work reminds us of the coincidence between that unfounded assertion of mortality and the slow, steady emergence of abstraction as something beyond the otherwise wondrous capacity of the lens.
Western Project, 2762 S. La Cienega Blvd., Culver City, (310) 838-0609, through April 30. Closed Sunday and Monday. www.western-project.com
November 7 – December 30, 2009 Opening reception Saturday November 7th 5-8pm.
Jason Adkins, Oliver Arms, Ron Athey, Tanya Batura, Heimir Björgúlfsson, Daniel Brice, Thomas Burke, Carole Caroompas, Cole Case, Exene Cervenka, Kris Chatterson, Justin Dahlberg, Michael Dee, Tom of Finland, Eric Freeman, Sush Machida Gaikotsu, Martin Gunsaullus, Ellina Kevorkian, Patrick Lee, Bob Mizer, Michael Reafsnyder, Nancy Riegelman, Chad Robertson, Joe Schmelzer, Aaron Sheppard, Arne Svneson, Vincent Valdez, Mark Dean Veca, Wayne White, Eve Wood, Yek
Western Project is pleased to present, The First Six Years, an anniversary exhibition of the gallery and its artists. Thirty one artists are included with new or recent works. The exhibition is also a celebration of the founding of the arts community in Culver City; Western Project being the third gallery to open its doors in November of 2003.