This eclectic group of artists kicks off our 2018 exhibition calendar with work that is surprisingly strange, quirky, and mysterious. Showcasing work in a wide array of mediums that will expectantly make you feel a bit apprehensive, these artists aim to engage the viewer through elements of absurdity, to consider how our perceptions are influenced by what we see. By juxtaposing realism with impracticality, this work may come across as a bit indecipherable, but is nonetheless intelligible.
Carol Coates aspires for her portraits of cultural diversity to provoke, challenge, and create insight, with humor. This quirky series considers how our perceptions are influenced by the lenses of experience and belief, and limited by the framework of expectation. This archival work is a combination of oil on canvas and mixed media on wood panel.
For his new series, Mark Penner-Howell is exploring the element of the absurd across a range of subjects. Wit and irony have always played a large role his work. The absurdities of our world are sometimes so overwhelming that humor seems a relevant and honest way to respond. In his work, this shows up in the kind of disparate images, and sometimes text, that are combined to create cultural “Rorschach” paintings, onto which viewers can project their own personal and cultural associations. The intent is to create works that are humorous, but also hopeful.
Bryan Leister’s current work is exploring the “uncanny valley”, a concept identified by Mashiro Mori, a robotics researcher who investigated emotional responses to mechanical recreations of human-like machines. The valley is a response between attraction and repulsion, based on degrees of human-like characteristics. Bryan’s interactive sculptures use computer rendering and interactivity to create video sculptures which respond to the viewer. Using programming and digital animation, the work challenges assumptions about representational art, and what it means to be a human in a changing physical and cultural landscape.
Roland Bernier incorporated words in his art for nearly 50 years. The idea of taking the word out of context opened a new visual world for him. He experimented with words, looking for, and creating new relationships between the form of the word and a variety of images. People often try to read meanings into the pieces, but generally the words are used as an art form or symbol. To Roland, making art was always chancy and uncertain, but he felt these are essential ingredients for a determined, innovative approach to art.
Malcolm Easton arranges and photographs objects that were once commonplace and familiar, and are now old, faded or tarnished. Combining these in unexpected ways, Malcolm aims to create something new – an image that suggests wonder or elicits mystery.
Angela Piehl’s work addresses luxury, accumulation, and alienation from Nature. She is interested in the suggestive undertones of lifestyle and behavior codified in the design imagery of popular media sources. The resulting imagery is grotesque, bouquet-like, and somewhat shocking, yet delicately fragile and beautiful. They appear luxuriously decorative and organically corporeal, imbibed with the power to both attract and repel.
An opening reception will be held on Friday, January 19, 2018, 5-9 pm at the gallery in the Prado building on 11th & Cherokee Streets in Denver’s Golden Triangle Museum District. The reception is free and open to the public, and the artists will be in attendance.
The exhibition is on view through Saturday, March 10, 2017 during regular gallery hours: Tuesday-Saturday,
11am-5pm, or by appointment. For further information call 303-355-8955, or visit: www.walkerfineart.com.
Walker Fine Art is a member of the Golden Triangle Museum District and the Denver Art Dealers Association.
The gallery is located just blocks from the Denver Art Museum in the Prado building on 11th Avenue and Cherokee Street (entrance on Cherokee).