Sites & Relics

Painting is how I make sense of my surroundings: I paint what I see, what I sense, and even what I don’t understand, always reaching for the edge where illusion meets reality. I’ve named my current show “Sites & Relics,” since the recent works represented here are bound together not just by my personal sensibilities but by the space and time of the local and the now as they stretch backward into a former heyday when the cobblestone streets, market stalls, and mills of New England hummed with activity and lit up the landscapes they inhabited. When I decide to paint a particular scene, I conjure in my mind how it may have looked 30, 60, 90 years ago, rolling back the creeping grime, chipped paint, and cracked glass and experiencing the place alive with the objects and people of the time.
The result, as you’ll find in this show, is that my subjects tend to reside in clear three dimensional space and at the same time are held captive by the two-dimensional picture plane, the canvas stretched stiff and tacked to its pine frame. This intuitive tension makes for imagery that is visually familiar, yet spatially and experientially disconcerting in the same way that watching an old film is – you become aware of the medium itself, of the sound crackles and visual distractions of the scratched film, and incorporate its interruptions and irritations into your viewing experience. Luckily, there’s almost always a happy ending.
Denis Luzuriaga – January 28, 2010

This work was ehxibited in February 2010 at the Wistariahurst Museum Gallery www.wistariahurst.org