“Shaken” by Michael Murphy
For the Tectonic Array exhibition Michael Murphy expands on his themes, “Forgotten Modernism” and “Super Sonic” with new original paintings and select works from these ongoing series, often seen throughout San Francisco. Coupled with the stunning accuracy of Melissa Arendt’s complimentary creations, 111 Minna Gallery proudly presents this pairing full of vibrant color and boldly balanced graphic contrasts.
“Forgotten Modernism” is the title of an ongoing visual exploration of San Francisco’s rich catalog of modern architecture.
Often overlooked, Modern architecture in San Francisco has played an important role in the ongoing Modernist Movement, and this work is an attempt to acknowledge the contribution that these stunning buildings make to the visual landscape. This study now continues to grow in scope and now includes the vast modernist resources of Southern California, and beyond.
Using bold colors and a stylized graphics, I portray this architecture not as something that quietly blends into a background, but rather elevating achievements that embody the best and highest principles that Modern architecture has to offer all of us.
With “Super Sonic” the images represent a personal study that attempts to concurrently synthesize several realities.
The ultimate goal is to create a fresh, contemporary tectonic, while recognizing certain influences of mid-20th century design and cultural zeitgeist. Atomic deserts, hovering metal ships, roadside steel and glass, space age superhighways- all come to mind.
These are purely iconic images however, not ingredients for a nostalgic recreation of a particular style. The moods and environments are deliberately ambiguous; it is left to the viewer to decide if they are looking at places of desolation and loneliness or scenes of quiet solitude.
As a visual artist, Melissa Arendt is in a constant state of creation, whether through painting, illustration or graphic design. Her work is characterized by organized clusters of colorful cells juxtaposed with technically lined pencil drawings of people, places and things that intrigue her. She enjoys forcing images together within the clusters to create aesthetic parties. Arendt is a California native and studied graphic design at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco.
In Tectonic Array she will be exploring the idea that we are all made up of “star dust” and will visually be exploring and delivering imagery steeped in cosmic backdrops and color clad galaxies.