Alexa Eisner has a background in social rebellion through dance in which art interrupts the redundancy of public spaces. For the opening reception of Terrain: navigating landscapes, she will be synthesizing dance and paint in a performance that will challenge traditional concepts of what “landscape” is and provoke viewers to consider the environments traversed outside of the physical and external.
Working out of his San Francisco studio on the outer edges of the city’s Mission district, Mark Garrett transforms neglected maps picked up at flea markets into intricately cut, mixed-media pieces that read like geographic oil-spills.
Mark’s intriguing deconstructed maps draw viewers in with an air of familiarity while simultaneously displacing them. The nature of the medium stirs an innate need to orient oneself by searching for clues in what remains visible: a body of water here, a cluster of mountain ranges there, and on occasion, a partial text label still visible.
“The thing I love about working abstractly is that you’re really forcing people to sort of tap into stuff that they think they’re seeing, but they’re not really sure they’re seeing,” Mark adds.
For Terrain James is presenting a series he refers to as “process landscapes,” in which the act of creation is the focus of his large, collaged compositions. For these pieces James uses his 1952 Heidelberg Windmill to venture into solidly abstract territory and touch upon the conceptual.
James’ new, reductive direction in his “process landscapes” is heavily reminiscent of the Process Art movement of the 60s and 70s which has been expressed in several mediums but has yet to be seen in printmaking. In employing monoprints and allowing mishaps like the ink running low, misprints, and other “defects” to remain a part of the final form, James effectively exposes what happens behind the closed doors of a printmaking shop when creating a piece of fine art.
In this third installment of Elisa Gomez’s “Tour to Terrain,” Elisa makes her way through Wyoming where the expansive wilderness introduces a distinctly new palette in the creation of her second painting. The artist discusses the process of making her newest large-scale piece, and her life on the road–now nearly 2 months a nomad.
Mixed-media painter, Tracey Kessler, creates huge compositions inspired by the daily occurrences in her life and the environment around her. Using a diverse collection of materials to explore texture and color, the layers of Tracey’s paintings can include anything from acrylic, spray paint, sumi ink, varnish, to coffee stains, eggshells, and hooks. These paintings are then intentionally exposed to the elements, as Tracey works the natural weathering into her pieces.
Terrain artist, Karina Bania’s serene, reduced-form landscapes depict the tangible world around us, as well as the invisible, yet perceptible geography of everyday moments. These “inner landscapes,” as the artist calls them, give color and form to the emotive territory we venture through.
Elisa makes her way to Telluride, CO where she begins painting on mountainsides. With the pressures of conventional life now removed from her daily existence she feels her work evolving:
“I am seeing the movement and gestures in my work become more free and aggressive looking (not aggressive angry but aggressive in the speed and application). I am arriving at moments of depth in a more naturally progressive way.”
Chris Lopez is a multimedia artist who creates lyrical compositions exploring dramatic lighting and its manipulation of the male form. His compositions, frequently labeled “erotic,” are portrayals of his personal concepts of beauty.
This post introduces a special series titled, “Tour to Terrain,” following abstract-expressionist artist, Elisa Gomez, as she makes her way from Texas to California. Elisa will be participating in The Midway Gallery’s fall exhibition, Terrain, a meditation on the outdoors (Sept. 10 – Oct. 22, 2016). She will be creating several pieces inspired by the American west while on her months long road-trip. Elisa’s large-scale paintings will be exhibited in Terrain, alongside items documenting her process.
“My approach is not really to be erotic in any way, it’s more about studying the human figure and expressing it. [. . .] I’m looking at the grand age of dramatic, figurative art and I want to explore that in my own in a modern sense.”