Walter Maciel Gallery is pleased to present a two person exhibition entitled Twice Removed by Greg Mocilnikar and Andy Kolar. The show presents a dialog between two abstract painters with different perspectives, influences and subject matter. Mocilnikar and Kolar became friends during their graduate work at California State University, Long Beach and had side by side studios following grad school. Mocilnikar currently lives and works in Long Beach while Kolar lives and works in the Mid City neighborhood of Los Angeles.
Greg Mocilnikar’s new paintings resume his interest in spatial properties transformed into delicate abstractions through experiencing and observing his surroundings. Daily occurrences become subjects that are conceptualized and rearranged into ephemeral interpretations and abstractions. Unlike Mocilnikar’s previous work where the location was a significant vehicle for the imagery, the new series focuses less on specific destinations and more on the overall collection of experience. The influence of both interior and exterior spaces merges in an abstracted pictorial field but always maintaining an overall sensibility of structure. The imagery is subtly created through the process of theoretically taking apart an environment in terms of scale, form, color and juxtaposition and re-contextualized into overlapping markings with the void areas having an equal presence with the clustered forms.
The paintings are intentionally deceptive when it comes to referential imagery and force the viewer to determine which areas are real as opposed to imagined locations. The notion of space has been an integral part of Mocilnikar’s painting practice but now with equal attention given to the pictorial outcome of the physical presence and the psychological implications created from the relationship of the markings. The two dimensional surfaces become a place for scattering and layering rustic pigments across hues of gray and neutral geometric shapes that loosely create a balance between believable spaces, unrecognizable forms and color indications. A series of black and white drawings done on paper will accompany the paintings and they create a similar visual depth that is as vulnerable and shifting as the reality they draw from.
Mocilnikar has had two previous solo shows with the gallery and his work has been included in group shows at our auxiliary space in the Pacific Design Center in 2010. Mocilnikar’s paintings are included in various corporate collections with his most recent acquisition by J Crew/Madewell as well as several private collections.
Intentionally positioned between representation and abstraction, Andy Kolar’s work examines the formal and optical aspects of painting. He explores shapes, colors and surfaces to discover the referential, implicative and relevant potentials of select combinations and collective compositions within the totality of the painting. His shapes range from organic blobs to more controlled geometric forms and often present themselves as vaguely abstracted architectural studies or topographical scenes. However, the compositions are truly abstract only suggesting the delivery of a narrative within all of the parts. The interpretation of visual information ranging from imagery to actual physical objects suggests a seemingly reductive situation where expectations of formal balance and aesthetics are contradicted.
The scale of the works and the relationships they form also play a vital role in the overall appreciation for the comparison and shape, color and form. The show includes large paintings with visual elements adjusted so they have the appearance of being shoved together or moved apart resulting in the shapes having to negotiate their own positions within the compositions. Tension is created by the slippage between the hand-drawn and the hard-edged “sliver” form, which appears in the composition in attempt to make the viewer look closer at the subtleties of the work. The show will include traditional paintings and works on paper as well as cut shapes from existing paintings that are reinvented as clever installations along the bottom edge of specific walls.
This exhibition marks Kolar’s first showing with the gallery. He was previously represented and included in solo and group shows at Carl Berg Gallery. In 2010 Kolar was one of 45 artists included in the California Biennial curated by Sarah Bancroft at the Orange County Museum of Art. His works are included in several private and corporate collections.