Greg Miller. Billy Schenck. America Martin. Jane Maxwell.
Showing: August 1st-September 30th, 2020
Location: 346 N Pacific Coast Hwy, Laguna Beach, CA 92651
JoAnne Artman Gallery encourages you to dive headfirst into “SUBMERGED,” featuring the works of America Martin, Billy Schenck, Greg Miller, and Jane Maxwell. Exploring the relationship between figures and nature, “SUBMERGED” presents water as a psychological space for reflecting upon form, memory, and isolation. Chronicling the story of water across a range of mediums, Martin, Schenck, Miller, and Maxwell detail the physical and emotional transformations of a body submerged in water.
America Martin offers thoughtful, meditative reflections in works that meld dreams with allegory. Testing the connection between personal history and sense-memory, Martin’s work often centers on overarching themes of human nature and our contact with the environment. Her technique of freehandedly capturing her subjects yields unapologetic marks and a spirited palette that hums with the vitality and vigor of the worlds she creates. Presenting these ideas in a unified, symbolic narrative, Martin’s fluid outlines of female forms weave, merge, and blend with the colors of her backgrounds, as body and water landscape become one.
Fusing spaghetti westerns with tongue-in-cheek humor, Billy Schenck is known as an originator of the Pop Western Movement. Incorporating techniques from photo-realism and pop art, such as the inclusion of Ben-Day dots and brightly juxtaposing colors and patterns, Schenck explores themes like the clashes between wilderness and civilization, freedom and restriction, and nature and folklore. Fascinated by surf culture and preludes to big waves, Schenck’s surfer girls depict a facet of Americana as iconic as his western paintings.
In his new works, Greg Miller revisits his series of swimmers submerged in water that brings forth fantasy and imagination. Constructing underwater realms that capture a moment of pause within the constantly changing and moving form of water, Miller’s works highlight the quiet tranquility of water and nature. Emphasizing surface quality and dimension, Miller’s collage-like process approaches light as both a subject and medium. Dynamically combining mixed medias of acrylic paint, found and repurposed paper materials, and a resin topcoat, the depth achieved mimics that of the bodies of water depicted. Masterfully manipulating spatial perception and luminescence, the visual shifts in Miller’s works suggest the passing of time and moments of man intruding nature.
Jane Maxwell’s artwork approaches the female body with an affectionate and celebratory feminist perspective. Extending her focus on female empowerment and fashion to swimwear, Maxwell’s silhouettes emerge from the dimensional, textural, backgrounds clad in the vestiges of paper ephemera. Maintaining texture through layering and building up the surface, the enigmatic quality of the works is reiterated by Maxwell’s use of ads and billboard materials that reveal words and phrases that tease us with alluring allusions. The anonymous figures have a definitive flair and attitude, keeping us at a distance as they swim and sunbathe, while pulling us further into their multi-dimensional narratives.
These works will inspire, provoke, engage and mesmerize. With visual perceptions always changing, peek behind the stories told and you’re sure to find the right artistic expression.