JoAnne Artman Gallery is pleased to present, The Back Room, a group exhibition that celebrates the seduction and drama of entering a gallery’s private, back room. An exploration into past and upcoming shows, the works in The Back Room celebrates the art world’s unique ritual of inviting preferred patrons to view the gallery’s exclusive inventory. Including works by America Martin, Mary Finlayson, Ellen Von Wiegand, Adriana Oliver, Greg Miller, and Anna Kincaide, all artists hold distinctive sensibilities in subject matter and concept, yet are linked through an expressive formal approach. In a collaborative effort in bringing the abstract and figurative arts together, the featured artists showcase the extensive visual influences of pop culture.
Colombian-American artist America Martin continues her examination of humanist themes through figurative abstraction and powerful, raw elements of color and line. Scenes of everyday life that link the body to the continuity of nature permeate her work, captured through her depictions of the human form, animals, and florals. Martin continually redefines her oeuvre through new material considerations, continuing the ubiquitous theme of human nature and our relationships with the physical world.
Mary Finlayson’s interest in painting interior spaces portrays how environments reveal identity. Navigating the themes of intimacy, memory, and self, Finlayson’s gouache paintings reflect the vulnerable narratives unveiled through ownership of possessions. Flattening the perspective of each scene, her still lifes provide a voyeuristic glimpse in to each curated space.
Ellen Von Wiegand’s linocuts reverberate with a quest for self-assurance and serenity as she uses her own nude body within her stylized prints. Featuring a distinctive use of line to establish composition, her silhouettes and their environments are incised with delicate contours that reinforce dimensionality. Highlighting structural and decorative elements with patterned line, texture, and opaque blocks of color, Von Wiegand’s intent and approach renders the works poetic, vulnerable, and highly personal.
With a sharp eye for shape and form, Adriana Oliver transforms familiar shapes into neutral forms open to interpretation. Working in a reductive palette, as well as simplified line-work, her imagery stands out with her minimalist approach to figuration. In her use of line, hue, intensity and value, the works attain depth and resonance, striking a perfect balance between message and form.
Greg Miller’s mixed media works are instantly recognizable, drawing on his specific cultural lens and Californian roots. Fragility, nostalgia, as well as the fleeting nature of cultural ephemera and collective memory are explored in works that effortlessly blend familiar imagery of the golden age of print media into new narratives. Miller’s visual collages are an amalgamation of grit and texture, the layers a visual representation of the destruction rendered by the passage of time.
Incorporating elements of fashion photography and contemporary socio-cultural emblems of status and identity, Anna Kincaide’s figures define the separation between body and mind. Headless and bursting forth with florals, her figures showcase the idea of ambiguity between our bodies, identities, and thoughts.
These artists 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.