Exhibition | Raymond Logan: Icons: Public and Personal | Contemporary Art at George Billis Gallery LA | LOS ANGELES | Art Week

Raymond Logan: Icons: Public and Personal

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Saturday, 8 January 2022 to Saturday, 19 February 2022
Saturday, 8 January 2022 - 4:00pm

Raymond Logan is painter of recognizable subjects but adamantly not a realist.  While the content of his paintings is wide ranging, he renders each with a deep reverence for its unique subtleties of shape, shadow, and most importantly, color.  Working in thickly applied paint and a rich color palette, Logan uses deft strokes, in effect carving his paint, in surprising colors extrapolated from what he sees.  Using this unique technique, his paintings become fully abstract up close.  Logan writes, “My work is born through solid draftsmanship plus a liberal application of paint via a brush or a knife or anything I can get my hands on, plus plenty of color experimentation.”

This exhibition focuses on Logan’s portrait work and includes paintings of people who have influenced him over his lifetime - both personal friends and family as well as public thinkers, activists, writers, musicians, and politicians. When starting a portrait, Logan considers the attributes that make the subject familiar and important to him.  He seeks out a captivating image that truly represents the person and unites them with the overall feel the artist is trying to express.  When possible, Logan takes the reference photographs himself - staging photo shoots that sometimes yield impromptu poses that enhance his feel for his subjects.

“We are all connected to people, places, and things,” Logan writes.  “Sometimes those connections are based on memories, sometimes they are immediate.  Either way, ethereal or evident, they are shared. My art is a dialogue between the viewer and myself about those shared connections.”

The portraits include such monumental figures as John Coltrane, whose music has been a huge part of Logan’s life.  In a subtle dichotomy, Logan has also painted his longtime friends Charlie, Greg, and Lalo with the same reverence he gives to the public figures in the exhibit.  The scale ranges from a five foot tall mugshot of Frank Sinatra to sixteen intimate 8x8 inch portraits including the likes of John Adams, Maya Angelou, Ruth Bader Ginsberg, and Jimi Hendrix, among others.  One of the most subtle and fascinating paintings in the show is a small portrait of Julie, the artist’s wife of many years.  Logan describes the stunningly beautiful and understated portrait as one of the most difficult works he has ever produced because of the how close he is to the subject.  Portraiture is complicated by so many factors from the nuances of how we read faces to the effect our relationship to the subject has on our perception.  Whether the subjects of his portraiture are public or personal, Logan’s approach is to present them via his uniquely interpretive style as revered icons - maybe lesser saints at times, but icons nonetheless. 

Raymond Logan received his BFA from the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California in 1988. He has been exhibiting in Los Angeles for many years - with work featured at the Pasadena Museum of History, the Beverly Hills Art Show, and Laemmle Theaters, among many other locations. This is Logan’s third solo exhibition with George Billis Gallery, although his work has been a prominent fixture in the annual Cityscape Show. Logan lives and works in Glendale, California.

Curator :

Venue ( Address ): 

2716 S La Cienega Blvd

Los Angeles, CA 90034

Other shows from George Billis Gallery LA Inc

Audra Weaser: Open Waters
05/14/2022 to 06/18/2022
Ron Rizk: Of Structure and Place
05/14/2022 to 06/18/2022
Daniel Phill: Gathering Color
04/09/2022 to 05/07/2022
Lindsey Warren: The View From Home
04/09/2022 to 05/07/2022



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