"The best of modern and postmodern painting is bound by the connective tissue of spiritual values. Mark Spencer’s art resonates with this connectivity; he emerges from a seemingly disparate lineage of artists including Odilon Redon, Max Ernst, Jose Clemente Orozco, and even Francis Bacon. Yet looking back at the crucible of time that shaped those artists great narrative tableaux, we can see and acknowledge the logic that produced Spencer and his contemporaries. This group includes Jeff Wall, Mark Tansey, Anselm Kiefer, and Vincent Desiderio; all artists who share a strong sense of the feminine, and who stand squarely within the mainstream of contemporary art making.
A survey of Spencer’s paintings and prints begs the theory that religion divides while spirituality unites people. At once formal yet psychological in their premise, Spencer’s images seek out sacred spaces where rituals of life and renewal are momentarily beheld in their eternal, difficult dance. As in every true ritual, a sacrifice must be made; spilling metaphorical blood as the most honest offering a human being can make to the numinous."
- Clayton Campbell is the Los Angeles correspondent for Flash Art Magazine, and the Co-Director and Curator of the internationally famous 18th street arts Complex in Santa Monica.