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Wednesday, January 17, 2018



by: Sandra Vista

Loren Philip is a Los Angeles based abstract artist who is part of Coagula Curatorial's "New Curator's Series".  After sessions with Mat Gleason, art director, the artists have an opportunity for a hands-on experience of curating their own exhibitions.  When I visited Philip's studio last month, he described the method in which he was designing his own abstract art group exhibition.  He has been a "fan" and supporter of the artists he chose for his exhibition.  He mentioned discovering Jimi Gleason's illuminating paintings and meeting him at William Turner Gallery.  Philip was overwhelmed and honored when Gleason was open to being in his group show.  

Jimi Gleason

Philip's selection of abstract artists is defined by their idiosyncrasies.  Jimi Gleason's abstract painting with a metallic scalene triangle, no lines are equal,  shines like glitter from ancient Egyptian beetles.  The metallic form invites memories of using colors from nature.   As an abstract artist he allows for the viewers to make up their story.  The placement of  metallic collage and stained canvas release a sacramental image which is an idiosyncratic element of abstract art and connections with spiritual realms.

Philip designed the placement of the paintings into a quasi-color wheel that begins in the entry of the gallery.  To the right is Philip's painting which consists of various shades of oceanic cool blues.  Proceeding clockwise is Gleason's painting with earth tones and complementary orange to Philip's blue.  The strong contrasts, the production of afterimages, support the title of "Abstract Power".  

 Steve Seleska's painting continues the connection with magenta-blue hues marbleized and interwoven on the surface of his work.  With Philip's devotion to the ocean in his art work and lifestyle, he would obviously be attracted to Seleska's textural plankton forms cautiously emerging from the depths.   

Steve Seleska

Farzad Kohan has two paintings in the show that combine an abstracted " language of the heart" as the primary element of the color field.  The haptic, lachrymose, marks of Crazy for You exude passion and sensuality.  Kohan's stains of purple and blue become an extension of Seleska's painting and Philip's palette of fluid blues and white gestural marks.  Kohan's My Love consisting of magenta and pink hues is reminiscent of the romantic side of  Philip's paintings.  Philip attributes the love of his wife and daughter as a vital component for his painting practice.

Farzad Kohan Crazy for You

Farzad Kohan My Love

Emily Elisa Halpern's mossy green hues-a glimpse of nature and its lyrical dance, also relate to Philip's poetic and romantic nature in his art.  Halpern's painting also complements Kohan's pastel pinks and engages Michael Torquato DeNicola's two dynamic paintings of bold warm hues. 

DeNicola's stated that he works and reworks his paintings which are evident in the mosaic-like forms that ascend and descend.  His creative diligence is an architectural fete of alchemy.  DeNicola and Philip are brothers in arms in their allegiance, medicinal and spiritual realm of surfing and the purification of the ocean. 

Philip's maiden voyage combined artists whose creative idiosyncrasies are independent voices that became an extension of his artistic practice and fervor.

Emily Elisa Halpern

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