Helen Rebekah Garber
Spells, Spires and Other Delicate Business
October 27 - December 8, 2012
Artist's Reception: October 27, 2012, 7-10pm
Show Catalog (pdf, 2.50 Mb)
Charlie James Gallery is delighted to present Spells, Spires And Other Delicate Business, a solo show of painting by LA artist Helen Rebekah Garber. In Garber’s first solo show at the gallery, transformation through obsession and the examination of reverence are the central underpinnings of the work; an examination that mounts through the manipulation of layering and patterning within each painting. By drawing upon the idea of reverence within the boundaries of the canvas, and guided by intuition, the concentration of mark making infuses the work with energy and confers unto each piece a distinct presence.
The patterning that composes each image is sourced from both Eastern and Western aesthetic traditions: Paleolithic and Neo-Paleolithic fetish objects, West African ceremonial masks, Greek Icon painting, Italian and Northern Renaissance altarpieces, Jewish ceremonial textiles such as Tallit and Torah arks, Islamic prayer rugs, alchemical diagrams and geometric references to mathematical equations. By decoding and repurposing the source material into the skeleton of each painting’s structure, a contemporary devotional figure emerges as a central mass, allowing the reference points to both meld and compete with each other. Originally vibrantly colored, the final “skin” of white paint ties compositional elements together and is symbolic of a state of balance or equilibrium.
Helen Rebekah Garber (b. 1976. State College, PA) was raised in New York City and resides in Los Angeles. Her work has been exhibited in the U.S. and Europe at venues including The Laguna Art Museum, 31 Grand Gallery, New York, Bronwyn Keenan Gallery, New York and Per Pio Monte, Naples, Italy. She has been featured in publications including New American Paintings, The New York Times, Art ltd. and The Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, and by writers including Roberta Smith, Peter Frank and Colin Moynihan. She earned a BFA at The California Institute of the Arts in 2007 and studied painting at The New York Academy of Art and The Art Students League of Ne York.