Saturday, June 7, 2008

George Billis Gallery

One of the many galleries we visited was the George Billis Gallery located in Los Angeles, which has become an area for contemporary art. There were several artist featured in this gallery, which included the works of Bonita Helmer, David Shevlino, and Vezna Gottwald.

Bonita Helmer’s work is focused on two main principle both research and discovery that can be visible in her paintings. In other words, she is concerned with the content and communication of the work by experimenting and innovating in order to enhance the paint with mixed media. One of her paintings is entitled “Without Beginning, Without End I,” that displays her interest for movement based on time and space. The painting is a splash of cool colors with the illumination of warm colors that cause brightness to appear. It also reminds our group of outer space similar to what a star up close might look like that creates a beautiful spacious setting. Therefore, Bonita achieves abstraction in her work through several media in order to display a deep space.

Bonita Helmer

Without Beginning, Without End I

Acrylic on canvas, 48 x 60", 2007

Another artist that our group was able to acknowledge was David Shevlino, who from a very young age was exposed to art and became interested with the kind of painting that represented craft and technique. His goal is to balance the abtract/conceptual side with the technique side, which is visible in his paintings. One of his paintings entitled, “Big Jump,” demonstrates the capacity of his technique based on his use of color, brush strokes, and texture. Our group found that as one looked closer to his paintings the more colors appeared to make the overall picture. This work in particular is very captivating because Shevlino is able to capture the seconds prior to an action, which makes a connection to viewers as to what is going to happen. Shevlino is an artist that maintains technique, but is not afraid to experiment with the direction of the painting.

David Shevlino
"Big Jump"
Oil on Canvas, 2006

Furthermore, the final artist that our group took into account was Vezna Gottwald, an abstract painter. The reason our group found her so intriguing was because of the beauty of her work that takes the form of thick brush strokes. The brush strokes are compiled to create a texture surface with the balance of colors and spacing. Her painting entitled, “Initiation” demonstrates this successfully since she was able to balance orange hues in contrast with gray and black, yet is not overpowering. The title of the piece only adds to the unity of the painting because the viewer understands the purpose, which is emphasizing the beginning of something monumental or not depending on how a person perceives it. Ultimately, Gottwald’s style of abstract work is very rich, colorful, and soothing to look at.

Vezna Gottwald


oil and acrylic on canvas, 60 X 72"


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