In my earlier abstract sand paintings, I made more random marks using sticks of different sizes. But I didn’t feel satisfied with the patterns that emerged. Everything changed when I fixed a center point and worked out and around it. The repetition and the movement began to take on a meditative aspect. . . .
Gagosian is pleased to announce Heliocentric, an exhibition of new paintings by Jennifer Guidi. This is Guidi’s first exhibition with Gagosian and her first solo exhibition in Asia.
Guidi’s “sand paintings” mix oil paint with sand to create surfaces oscillating between color and texture. Evolving from her earlier figurative paintings, the sand paintings reside delicately and elusively in between figuration and abstraction, evoking the traditions of landscape and naturalist painting yet evading all literal references. Guidi responds to nature and natural phenomena, often by rendering barely perceptible instances of movement and transitions from light to dark (and vice versa). With their luminous qualities and their textured relief, her paintings register and generate minute shifts in perception, echoing natural effects while creating their own sensory horizons.
Beginning with an underpainting, Guidi applies a thick layer of sand to the painted surface while it is still wet. Then, she makes marks in the sand with a wooden dowel, in controlled and repetitive movements, often adding colored sand and paint along the edges of the rounded divots until the pattern is embedded onto the canvas in the manner of sedimentation or erosion. Guidi always begins with a lacuna placed deliberately to the left of dead center, mimicking the position of the heart within the body, and continuing outward in a radiant, centrifugal motion, like light permeating a landscape at dawn. Every painting is methodically brought to a state of harmony by this systematic yet organic process, connecting Guidi’s painting practice to strains of Minimalism that privilege attention to detail and repetition. Guidi’s expressive technique also reveals strong affinities with various non-Western practices in its intensely meditative patternmaking used to create imagery, narrative, or spiritual votiveness.
Guidi’s sense of color, light, and the physical and tactile emanations into which they play is based on her observations of light in Los Angeles, where she lives and works, and where hazy skies caused by the atmospheric conditions of the West Coast, as well as the city’s man-made pollution, make for extra-brilliant sunsets. The field of color spans from painting to painting, as well as within each individual one, radiating out of the gouges from light to dark, sometimes showing light within landscape-like forms, sometimes refracted as through the painting itself, ranging and varying like the light wavelengths produced by the concentration of particles in the atmosphere during sunrise and sunset. In Force of Instinct (Painted Universe Mandala SF #1G, Sunset Sky, Black-Purple Mountains, Natural Ground) (2017–18), which measures 116 by 98 inches, dark, oceanic depths transition into luminous upper expanses, creating a panoramic effect with no single focal point. The fourteen paintings in this exhibition also include Guidi’s first triangular-shaped canvases, in a spectrum of colors, placing the bodily, organic accumulations of paint and sand within a sharp geometry.
在我早期的抽象沙畫中，我以不同粗幼的棍子隨意繪畫，但我並不滿意那些圖案。當我設定一個中心點，然後圍繞中心點創作後，一切便變得不同了。重複的圖案和動作開始令人進入冥想的狀態. . .
—詹妮弗·圭迪 (Jennifer Guidi)
圭迪對色彩和光線的感知，以及兩者實質展現方式的理解，皆源自她在洛杉磯對光線的觀察。她在洛杉磯居住和從事創作，受西岸的大氣狀況和城市的污染影響，當地的天氣蓋上一層朦朧的煙霞，因而造就份外耀眼的日落美景。色彩在畫作上展開，從坑紋之中散射開來，由淺至深，時而在類似風景的形態之中綻放光芒，時而透過畫作折射，猶如日出和日落時隨著大氣粒子的濃度而變化的光波。於《本能力量》(Force of Instinct (Painted Universe Mandala SF #1G, Sunset Sky, Black-Purple Mountains, Natural Ground)，2017–18年，116 × 98吋)中，海洋深處的深邃色彩，轉化成畫面的明亮色調，塑造出沒有焦點的全景畫面。是次展出的14幅畫作亦包括圭迪首批色彩絢麗的三角形作品，顏料與沙粒於利落的幾何輪廓內交錯堆疊，形成立體自然的效果。
Twelve Tracks: Jennifer Guidi
Jennifer Guidi shares a selection of the music she listens to in the studio and speaks about its connection to her meditative painting process.
The artist speaks with Laura Fried about her most recent paintings, the symbol of the serpent, and her evolving relationship to color.
Gagosian Quarterly Spring 2020
The Spring 2020 issue of Gagosian Quarterly is now available, featuring Cindy Sherman’s Untitled #412 (2003) on its cover.
(RED) Auction 2018
Theaster Gates and Sir David Adjaye join Bono to spearhead (RED)’s third auction of contemporary art and design, raising funds for the global fight against AIDS. As Gagosian prepares the preview exhibition, Gillian Pistell looks at the urgency of this vital cause.
Jennifer Guidi: Heliocentric is available for online reading from April 22 through May 21 as part of Artist Spotlight: Jennifer Guidi. Her first exhibition with Gagosian, Heliocentric featured fourteen luminous paintings with surfaces that oscillate between color and texture. Images of these works, as well as installation views of the exhibition, are accompanied by an essay by Stuart Krimko in this accompanying publication.
Jennifer Guidi: Heliocentric (Hong Kong: Gagosian, 2018)
April 22–28, 2020
Light and color pervade every aspect of Jennifer Guidi’s work. The Los Angeles artist’s radiant, mandala-like paintings are marked by tonal and chromatic shifts that operate in concert with richly textured surfaces. Mixing sand into oils and acrylics, she produces immersive abstract compositions that borrow from the pared-down structures of Minimalism while evoking a powerful archetypal symbolism.
Photo: Brica Wilcox