January 2014 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wes Christensen: Footnotes
Exhibition Dates: February 22 – March 22, 2014
Reception for the Artist: Saturday, February 22, 2014, 5:00 - 7:00 PM
Gallery Hours: Tuesday-Friday: 10:00am - 5:30pm, Saturday: 11:00am - 5:30pm
Koplin Del Rio Gallery is pleased to announce its sixth exhibition of work by Los Angeles based artist Wes Christensen.
The show, titled “Footnotes”, features intimate multilayered pieces executed with watercolor, gouache, oil, and colored pencil on paper. The process of layering different mediums echos the strata of information in each picture’s narrative, from classical references to literary allusions, each delicately rendered scene speaks volumes.
The current show is a scatter of mementos, revisiting subject matter that has preoccupied me and has informed my work over the past 35 years. It does not represent a trajectory of new work, but rather a gleaning of personal images one might find in a time capsule -- bringing together the emotional and humorous, the whimsical and poignant -- combining moments of memory and significance – and tossed out to fall like Mallarmé’s “Un Coup de Dés.”
While some of these pictures revisit specific past people and events, to me they describe moments that are with me still, evidence that the past isn’t done with, but rather it remains a mine for future renewed images. I have always valued the significant gesture, emblematic items and mysterious locales, all filled with narrative possibilities for pictures that invite interpretation by a sympathetic viewer.
My search for the significant, universal gesture, has been a recurring theme in my work, and whether it is Wanda Coleman (American poet 1946-2013) lighting matches, or the romantic pun of “Heart Beat,” or Shay Bredimus pointing to “The Future” these moments of pantomime become silent poetic images for me. Footnotes, links to other related information on the internet, or the sources for items found in texts. Footnotes suggest deeper meanings, and in our visual world, I use it to suggest the preoccupations with recurrent motifs -- those subjects that artists find themselves returning to again and again – Cezanne’s Monts St. Victoires, Degas’ ballerinas, or Rembrandt’s epiphanies.
So here, I give you dogs and movies, fantasy worlds and sacred ones, music and poetry, nostalgic landmarks and keepsakes; melodramatic gestures -- erotic, emotional and melancholic memories made concrete in a snapshot view, des choses du temps perdu . . .
– Wes Christensen
Wes Christensen has exhibited in galleries and museums across the United States, including the Frye Art Museum in Seattle, the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology in Ann Arbor, The Riverside Art Museum, The Pete and Susan Barrett Art Gallery at Santa Monica College, and the Gala Center in San Luis Obispo. He was awarded an NEA Visual Arts Fellowship and has also published articles in art, literary and archaeological journals.
For further information or photos, please contact Kimberly Clark at