David Richard Gallery will present eight new paintings of acrylic paint airbrushed on impeccably smooth surfaces by Matthew Penkala in his second solo exhibition with the gallery. The exhibition, "There's No Shame In It," will be presented August 2 through September 7, 2013 with an opening reception on Friday, August 2 from 5:00 – 7:00 PM at the gallery located on 544 South Guadalupe Street, Santa Fe, New Mexico 87501, phone 505-983-9555 in the Santa Fe Railyard Arts District.
The new paintings in “There’s No Shame In It” evoke a west coast sensibility of sunny open spaces, luminous rooms and alluring sunsets. The paintings are exuberant with bright and searing colors of hot pink, acid green and blood orange on open fields of white. Yet there is something that undercover or like surveillance activity, which is probably due to the photographic quality of the paintings with their smooth surfaces and a bit of shine, like that from the gloss finish of a photograph or the reflection from plastic negatives. But several of the paintings themselves read as photographs, a hyper-real painting of a small portion of a digital image with a glare that masks whatever is behind, adding to the mystery of a possible covert operation. Other paintings look like overlapping transparencies sprawled on a desk or adjacent images on a strip of negatives. Even though the imagery might be of an actual fragment of a photograph, the paintings read as pure non-objective abstraction. The fragmented compositions of objects not grounded create a tension between what is presumably real and that which is an abstraction or imagined. The dispersal of fine droplets of paint using an airbrush furthers the metaphor of pixels and digital imagery as well as an atmospheric setting, which adds to the dream-like illusion.
Mathew Penkala, a Los Angeles-based artist, received his BFA in Photography from Arizona State University and MFA in Painting from Cranbrook Academy of Art. He has had several solo exhibitions and his artwork included in many group exhibitions in Los Angeles, Santa Fe, Detroit and Phoenix. His work is included in numerous private and public collections, including the Neiman Marcus Collection, Houston, Texas; Maxine and Stuart Frankel Collection, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan; and Daimler-Chrysler Permanent Collection, Southfield, Michigan, among others.