Luck in the Valley
April 20 - May 20, 2018 | Project Space
Climbing the ridges of the Santa Monica mountains or setting out on pilgrimage to Mount Shasta. Sun beams moving from the horizon to the shore. These paintings are atmospheric notations of the sense of space which would permeate such wanderings.
In the dense landscape, a figure emerges. The figure poses, or points, or waits. The Jack of Hearts shrouds himself in a place which is unraveling into asemic line and turpentine washes. These protagonists become spectators in the landscapes they are made from. Positioned at the bottom or near the edge of the frame, they gaze out or into the thick triangle of color.
These are automatic drawings whose edges are allowed to leak into another surface at its proximity. Painting rags are recycled into images. What would be discarded refuse becomes a new potent surface with clues to panoramic vistas, birds-eye views, and distant architectures.
Paintings are placed on the floor, on top of each other, making mounds. Like geological cross sections the paint and turpentine leaking from one surface are rewritten onto another below. The dust and sun from sessions outside mixing on the surfaces infuses the paintings with a sense of presence and space, not just description.
The works are encased by their frames like the edges of a stage or a curtain would the activity of the theater. Even if these figures could move, the action would remain minimal. The figure is a statue, a place holder. Their ambiguity allows for drift, like roaming a beautiful terrain, or watching a play where ones mind wanders, dreams, and then comes back to reality.
Gracie DeVito (b. 1985) lives and works in Los Angeles. She has performed and exhibited work recently at Tif Sigfrids, 356 Mission, Commonwealth and Council, Claremont College, and The Torrance Art Museum. She both curated and performed in a performance weekend at ltdlosangeles. Gracie received an MFA from CalArts in 2012.