The summer is nearly upon us. It is through its cycle we present six Los Angeles artists whose diverse approaches are linked into one arena.
Chris Ellis presents a gridded cubic sculpture that extends outward into connective modules like a transformer designed by Sol LeWitt. Elegant in design, almost unwieldy, Ellis adds a maneuverable twist to the otherwise static realm of traditional sculpture. Patrick Jackson also offers a sculpture, an amalgam of the industrial and corporeal; it features a seven-foot tall metal structure, replete with brick wall pattern, embedded in a wax-cast base that would make David Cronenberg blush. The sculpture’s additional use of found cups and cup holders ups the ante. John McAllister also presents two paintings with an early to mid 20th century frisson; they are pictures within pictures, flattened Chinese boxes of space and pattern hewn together with the palette of Pierre Bonnard and the motifs of Matisse, mounting a salty salute to the ghosts of Modernism. Jon Pestoni counters with a painting that wears its own making on its sleeve, sans the faux-bravura of AbEx, but with the finesse of a palimpsest, an image of rigor as if it was a casual activity. Ryan Sluggett adds to the mix with a large ebullient painting that limns and dips into the perimeters of figuration; redolent of the German Neo-Expressionist painters of the 1980s, yet swashed with an idiom all his own, Sluggett paints with a vigorous control unique among his peers. Equally vigorous, if not more so due to its performative roots, John Williams presents a painting of motley, heterogeneous gestures pressurized into one picture plane, intimating his diverse output in performance, photography and sculpture.
Chris Ellis recently received his MFA from Art Center, Pasadena in 2011 where he recently presented his thesis exhibition entitled Vanishing Mechanics. He has also shown throughout Los Angeles including Cirrus Gallery, 4-F Gallery, and sideSPACE, Pasadena.
Patrick Jackson received his MFA from USC in 2007 and has held solo exhibitions at Nicole Klagsbrun Gallery, New York in 2010 and at Chung King Project, Los Angeles in 2008. This year he was included in Greater LA, a survey of Angeles artists exhibited in New York. In 2010, he participated in group exhibitions at Musee dʼArt Contemporain, Bordeaux, France and was included in Portugal Arte 10, Lisbon. In 2009 Jackson was also included in Second Nature: The Valentine-Adelson Collection at the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles.
John McAllister received his MFA from Art Center, Pasadena in 2007 and has held solo exhibitions at James Fuentes LLC, New York in 2008, 2009, and 2010. This year he participated in a two-person exhibition at Ribordy Contemporary, Geneva with Stephen G. Rhodes. McAllister’s recent group exhibitions include Harlequin at Sister/Cottage Home in 2009, and at the Cue Art Foundation, New York in 2008.
Jon Pestoni received his MFA from UCLA in 1996. Recent solo exhibitions were held a Lisa Cooley, New York in 2009 and 2011, including a two person exhibition with Alex Hubbard at Shane Campbell Gallery, Chicago in 2010. Pestoni also participated in group exhibitions at Greene Naftali Gallery, New York in 2010, and at China Art Objects, Los Angeles in 2009.
Ryan Sluggett received his MFA from UCLA this year. This summer, Sluggett is participating in a group exhibition entitled 4 Artists at Fredricks & Frieser, New York and has taken part in numerous group and solo exhibitions throughout Canada including TrépanierBaer, Calgary, Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver, and the Khyber Institute for Contemporary Art, Halifax.
John Williams received his MFA from Calarts, Valencia in 1999. His most recent solo exhibition was held at Brennan & Griffin, New York in 2011, including solo exhibitions at Sister, Los Angeles in 2005, 2007, and 2009. Williams was recently included in group exhibitions at Barbara Gladstone, New York, Sala Pelaires, Palma de Mallorca, Spain, and Eight Veil, Los Angeles, all in 2010; other group exhibitions include LA Trash and Treasure at Milliken Gallery, Stockholm in 2006, and Everything in Particular at Acme, Los Angeles in 2005.