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Sparks Gallery’s programming for 2021 has included prominent Southern California artists who explore the theme and concept of “Identity” in their work. As we continue through our summer programming, we will feature an artist whose work explores how movement between people and objects can define their identity, as well as the identity of others. In her solo show, “The Way We Move”, artist Kelsey Overstreet draws inspiration from her environment, and speaks to human experience through exploration of movement in her abstract expressionist works.
We invite you to join us in the gallery on Saturday, August 7, 2021 from 11am-7 pm for the Opening of Kelsey Overstreet’s solo show, “The Way We Move”. RSVP Required. RSVP at https://sparksgallery.com/rsvp?eid=28110
The first impression of Overstreet’s work reveals how her environment has influenced her color palette. Natural tones are present, evocative of seafoam, rocks, and sand in the base of the works. Abstracted prismatic gradients punctuate the work. Reflecting the character of the artist herself, the work is curious and explorative. Her process is driven by a combination of physically active and quick gestural marks coupled with slow, meditative detail work. She uses pace, rhythm and breath to depict sensations within. Along with wide, sweeping arches and spirals, her work can also be identified by her broad strokes, transparent washes of color, web-like lines, and bursts of confetti.
Overstreet explains, “I want people to engage with the work and feel both activated and calm. I want people to live with work that intentionally creates sacred space. I want the paintings to evolve over time and the viewer to continually discover new things the longer they live with or view the work. I want the work to change the environment it lives in.”
There is a dynamic movement to each piece, as abstracted shapes and prismatic gradients seem to be frozen in time, almost fossil-like. We might imagine that these shapes and forms were free to move about the space they were given. They tend to “react”, curling and twisting to the edges of the canvas. The canvas itself becomes an external influence to these painted forms. Will they continue to move if we glance away, or is their journey over?
The concept for these particular works began in observation of both occupied and unoccupied spaces. Overstreet was intrigued by the subtle changes that greatly alter the way we perceive what is around us. After several months into this investigation, she “was struck by an image of shipping containers, beautifully stacked in fixed organization and yet dynamically in transit. Even the things we carry and hold to as our identity, this subjective cargo that is contained and moving toward a destination is intriguing, particularly through personal and public spaces touched by a global pandemic standstill…” This duality of movement alongside stagnation sparked questions for the artist, which she explored through her work.
We can observe how enduring experiences connect humans to each other, and to objects around us. When connected, and when we move together or apart from one another, a story is born, thus defining us. Overstreet adds, “Painting is movement and the relationship between action, object and narrative. Even a single line in repetition portrays movement: line after line after line after line until a direction or narrative reveals itself. The way we move and occupy space matters.
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