New exhibit opens at Barn Gallery in Woodland – Daily Democrat
A new exhibition opening at YoloArts’ Barn Gallery in Woodland brings together a diverse group of artists and a collection of artworks that blend the recognizable with the abstract, creating an exciting and unexpected visual experience.
The exhibition “Vibrant Exploration: Works in Representational Abstraction” opens with a reception with the artists on Thursday, June 23.
This exciting exhibit was curated by Omar Thor Arason, Assistant Professor of Art at CSU Sacramento and Sierra College, and Manuel Fernando Rios, Associate Professor of Art at Woodland Community College. The two art teachers are longtime artists and friends, and have collaborated on two-person shows, sharing ideas and inspiration over the years. Both artists are very involved in the artistic communities that span from Sacramento to the Bay Area, and were inspired to ask very talented artists from these communities to participate in this exhibition. The curators admire the work of all the artists and note that they share a common aesthetic in these visual expressions.
“Over the 17 years of our friendship, we have noticed that not only do we have similar approaches in our compositions, but despite our remarkably different backgrounds, we share a very similar taste and admiration for contemporary visual art that combines abstraction , a non-objective gestural brushstroke with more recognizable figurative elements anchored in surreal space,” Arason and Rios said in their joint artist statement.
Performers on the show include Rachelle Agundes, Bret Amory, Omar Thor Arason, Tavarus Blackmon, Serena Cole, John Yoyogi Fortes, Ramona Garcia, and Manuel Fernando Rios.
“Omar and Manuel have brought together such an accomplished group of local artists whose works truly reflect the title of the show,” said Janice Purnell, Creative Director of YoloArts. “Not only is the work vibrant, but it explores an array of compelling, multi-layered themes.”
Artist statements prepared for the exhibition include:
“Agundes’ creative practice manifested from an exploration of the process of memory and how it becomes distorted over time. The paintings represent collaged and compiled images of his surroundings, memories, family history, photographs and dreams, which are filtered through studio processes. She uses process-oriented materials and patterns to manipulate imagery in other works. The result is a juxtaposition, an overlap or a piling up of space and time. The collage of space and ideas allows time to fluctuate between past, present and future, much like the relationship to time in dreams.
“My interdisciplinary practice explores mundane, everyday themes that structure everyday life. I am interested in the everyday experiences that build our habitual engagement with the world and how these habits often prevent us from paying attention to our surroundings. My work draws attention to economic and social conditions in the documentation/representation of the changing urban landscape, and addresses issues of gentrification, class, ethnicity and community.
Omar Thor Arason
“In his paintings, Arason explores the imaginary connection between physics, history, psychology, myth and personal narrative. Working in a Northern European vernacular of figurative painting, Omar explores a variety of hypothetical situations that aim to stretch and explore the ways in which archetypes can emerge and highlight contemporary and historical issues.
Tavarus Blackmon, also known by the Anglo-Saxon, Blackmonster, is a devoted Black Father and Partner with three children in Tree City, Sacramento, California.
His work addresses the brutality of our history, the mystery of our origin and the hope for the future. The artist makes his own colors with powdered pigment and polymer. The process of creating colors, paintings, and connecting with family creates a healing path for the artist.
Manuel Fernando Rios
“Manuel Fernando Rios’ work explores the complexities of understanding identity. A painter first and foremost, Rios also incorporates collage, image transfer, and screen printing into his work. The imagery often includes figurative subjects juxtaposed alongside colorful geometric shapes that flow in and out throughout the picture plane, creating a sense of confusion and confusion. The interaction between the characters is the result of Manuel’s exploration of ethnicity and self-identifying subcultures.
“Sometimes the shocks of transitions drag us into states of silence from which we have to find creative ways to recover. Having immigrated to Sacramento from Guanajuato, Mexico at the age of thirteen, art became an important language and outlet for expression. The works in this exhibition explore the nuances of memory and discovery and how home is remembered, reimagined and recreated through storytelling, rituals and dreams.
“I’m interested in exploring the narrative of what it’s like to be an American (cisgender) woman today. By combining images from art history with photography appropriate to advertising culture, I play with the relationships between gender, power and the viewer. By recontextualizing imagery through the prism of the female gaze, I investigate the relationships between desiring and being desired.
John Yoyogi Fortes
“When I was thinking about what I was going to put in this exhibition, I thought of the biggest works in my studio that I’m currently working on, but then I decided to create a unique wall installation from a variety of works from the past to the present. , temporarily giving them new life. To me, the act of assembling works is very much like painting, laying down images, considering relationships, layering of meaning and opening the door to the unknown.
Vibrant Exploration continues at the Barn Gallery until August 20.
The artists’ reception will take place from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Thursday, June 23. Music, light refreshments and wine will be provided.
Arason and Rios will be guest speakers on Thursday, July 21 at the YoloArts trade show series. The conference will take place at The Barn Gallery from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
The Barn Gallery’s regular opening hours are Wednesdays and Thursdays from 2:30 p.m. to 5 p.m.
The Barn Gallery is located at 512 Gibson Road in Woodland. For more information, contact YoloArts at 530-309-6464 or [email protected]