2009 11 05813771

Report From L.A. – Art Show Review. LOGAN HICKS “THIN VEILS & HEAVY ANCHORS” LACE, HOLLYWOOD CA 8 – 10 March, 2013

 

Tonight’s opening of Logan Hick’s show, “Thin Veils and Heavy Anchors” marks the return to Los Angeles after a seven year hiatus; and my first opportunity to see his work in the flesh. An experience I’m disappointed I’ve had to wait so long for.

Hicks started his career as a screen printer, but has developed and expanded his style over the years to bring a level of organic complexity to his work. The pieces are strong and thought provoking. Two different but complimentary aspects of the artist’s approach are presented in this show, which inspire from both the technical and aesthetic view.

As Hicks explains, “I’ve always seen my architectural pieces like stages for plays that haven’t yet happened. Each element has its own personality. Each building is a metaphor for that which is about to happen.”

These works are meticulously overlaid combinations of stencils and etchings. He presents complex architectural environments so elegantly precise in their construction. Subways, tunnels and staircases with hyper realistic angles, each immediately recognizable from the design, yet still anonymous. And in counterpoint, stylistic backgrounds add a subtle, tapestry like texture; creating a fluid backdrop to the symmetry of his etchings.

Hicks incorporates people, mostly women, into these pieces. Each of them positioned in such a way it seems as if we caught them in mid-step (or, in some cases, falling). Although his technique for this aspect of his piece creates a softer image, the women he portrays are all strong and sensual, surprised but not intimidated by our presence, which is less important than the continuation of their journey.

And the longer we stay, the easier it is to see the various layers used to create the final piece, which in turn underscores how painstaking and complicated his process must be. Examining these images, I found myself clenching and stretching my hands in automatic reflex as I considered the time and patience necessary to draw out and then hand cut the stencils, which must be true things of skeletal beauty to see when they are finished.

8339864658_f3ebe3c2c7

A true East Coaster, Hicks moved to Baltimore for college and started his love affair with the energy and anonymity of the city; elements of both clearly present in his work. Later he moved west but, although appreciating time in San Diego, found it hard to be as challenged by an environment always guaranteeing good weather, comfortable living, an easy life.

Returning back to the seasons of New York, he is now enjoying the way those elements impact his time, his plans & intentions. His timelines unexpectedly compressed, or his process re-thought because of these external forces. Having the opportunity to speak with Logan Hicks about his work, he explained the constant inspiration he finds from the city he lives in. The gritty atmosphere, ever-changing landscape of buildings and their inhabitants all feed into his creativity; and the impact is clearly visible.

In stylistic contrast to his architectural pieces, the images of empty streets are gorgeously muted washes of colour which quietly pull us closer; offering an invitation to step in and walk along the cobblestones, or peer through the half lit windows. His photo realistic style balanced with a painterly quality that teases the eye and adds to the quietly voyeuristic pleasure of being somewhere completely unknown and yet immediately familiar.

“…Doors open worlds, stairs elevate, hallways lead to the future, walls represent adversity. The architecture painted is not literal – it is the architecture of the mind”.

There is no question his images inspire questions about decisions made or we still have to make, and in turn the places and experiences to come from them. They are strong and evocative, self assured and beautiful.

 

http://workhorsevisuals.com/

 

God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.