Slick surfaces and swirling, curvilinear forms are the order
of the day at Laguna Beach’s Joanne Artman
, invoking the intense light, saturated colors, and rolling
waves of the California beaches just a few steps away from the gallery’s
location. In the “The Back
Room Spring Celebration!
” the gallery invites visitors to cast their eyes over a vibrant
collection of their so-called “back room artists,” a cohort whose seductive
images demand front-row viewing.
their abstract, layered compositions of Skittle-colored acrylic forms, coated
in resin—which appear to float and swirl within the depths of each work—Alberto Murillo
’s paintings pop from the
wall. It’s easy to imagine sinking a hand into Murillo’s viscous, curvilinear
shapes. No less absorbing, Anja Van Herle
’s confrontational acrylic
paintings of doll-like female faces with plump, glossy lips and blinged-out
shades that evoke all the glamor and allure of Southern California.
very epitome of Hollywood glam (of a more vintage variety) Marilyn Monroe
appears with blonde coif and puckered pout in the work of Robert Mars
, whose objects of
fascination are the darlings of America’s Golden
Age. Borrowing a technique of Robert
, Mars transfers his found images onto
hand-crafted wooden panels, upon which he renders patterns including flags,
bull’s eyes, and other signs of Americana. Meanwhile, the duo behind Stallman
life and art, Stephen Stum and Jason Hallman—pioneer their own technique,
cutting painted canvases into strips and arranging them into sculptural,
labyrinthine structures that evoke curving topographies.
Along with other artists on view in Joanne Artman’s back
room, Murillo, Van Herle, Mars, and Stallman pack a visual punch, joining to
form a presentation that is bombastic and enticing in equal measure.