Patrajdas Contemporary is pleased to announce its next exhibition at Whitespace in Ogden Utah: New Visions of the West.
New Visions of the West will open at Whitespace, 2420 Wall Ave, Ogden UT Friday, July 11, with a free public reception from 6-9pm. exhibition thru September 27.
Conceived to complement the annual Pioneer Days’ Traces of the West exhibition, New Visions takes a fresh look at iconic western images and landscapes - through a contemporary lens.
Some 20 artists from around the globe are participating, with works in many media represented: drawing, painting, photography, as well as glass, ceramic, plastic, metal and paper sculpture.
While our beloved landscape features prominently, New Visions of the West considers it in the context of more contemporary narratives - ecology, racial stereotypes - rendering the familiar and iconic in poignant, amusing, and perhaps unsettling ways.
In NVOW, nearly two dozen artists revisit iconic themes, legendary stories and familiar landscapes, looking at them again through a contemporary lens: how we interact with and impact the expanse once thought to be the last frontier. More than than just looking at new ways to tell the stories of familiar places, they also find new ways of expressing them, using new media like glass and clay in addition to paint and photography.
Change, of course, is inevitable. We have tamed the land with technology and industry, (though it’s still capable of killing you if unprepared).
Today’s American West is still home to wide expanses of desert, but those vistas are now as likely to be broken by towers as buttes, as likely to be cut through with interstates as by canyons. No longer a virgin territory of limitless potential, it is peppered with the remnants of failed enterprise.
Gone too are the petticoats and long dresses of Pioneer women, replaced by short shorts and tank tops. Cowboys are more likely to drive trucks than ride horses. Boots remain.
And yet, for all the marks upon the land, the west remains symbolic.The natural beauty of spaces left untouched still inspires. Burning Man, a yearly festival of personal freedom and artistic self-expression held in the alkaline desert of Nevada, could likely happen no where else.
These works bring us new tropes, some of which ask ”what hath we wrought?”, while others honor the original themes of freedom and adventure. Others still like those of Paco Pomet, skewer the stereotypes of the west with a wry humor. Several works in this exhibition make the case that the landscape is as ever worthy of record- but also remind us of the duties of stewardship.
The wide expanses of the West still encourage contemplation, still offer hope. Rather than celebrate the exploitation of the land, today’s artists are concerned with preserving it.
Dan Lydersen “Where the Buffalo Roamed” oil on canvas; 16”h x 12’w; 2008 5.4MB
Adam Bateman “Smokestack” digital print on laser cut aluminum, 48”x36”; 2014 12MB
Tim Conlon “WP3” G scale model train car, paint; 2014 6.4MB
Paco Pomet Frente oil on canvas, 23.5 x 31.5”; 2013 3.4MB
Geoffry Smalley “Nowaykesugga” McKenney & Hall intervention, acrylic gouache, colored pencil, acrylic on book page, approx. 12" x 9"
Joe Wardwell “Stupid F Words” oil on canvas; 22” x 40”; 2013
Shawn Huckins “Western Characters Armed with Winchesters” acrylic on canvas, 42’ X 36’; 2014