Peter Wayne Lewis: Paintings from Middle Earth

November 9th through December 23, 2011

We end 2011 at JAYJAY with the ever upbeat and broad visionary paintings of Peter Wayne Lewis in a one person exhibit.  This body of work continues the ideas of his ‘Booster” series, shown in 2008 at JAYJAY and 40 Acres Gallery here in Sacramento. ‘Booster’ refers to the act of building on bodies of work from the past and making the markings bigger, broader, with reconfigurations that have a random quality which gives the work a lively, fresh and liberating feel. Lewis spends much time in Beijing and though the work has ties to western modern masters in linear simplicity, the East is becoming more influential as the black takes on Chinese brush painting attributes, while the palette might remind us of Lewis’ Caribbean roots. The work remains lyrical, musical and seems to even ascend!  Don’t we long for visual imagery that removes us of our current conversation (you know the one we are all having) with marks that are without ulterior motive?

Though written in 2003—this quote from NY Times art critic Roberta Smith still applies:

“Part of the pleasure of these works is their ease of deconstruction. The perpendicular or repeating bands of color and occasional ‘Tanguyesque’ squiggles with which Mr. Lewis intrudes upon stark white grounds broach no reworking.”

Lewis received his MA at CSU San Jose in 1979 and showed often in California through the 90’s; with three solo museum exhibits at the San Jose Museum of Art, Monterey Peninsula Museum of Art and the Triton Museum in Santa Clara in the mid to late 1980’s. Lewis has spent much of the last twenty years, while residing on the East Coast, where he is professor of painting at the Massachusetts College of Art in Boston, exhibiting internationally, with one person shows in Germany, Japan and China, as well as, New York.  These international exhibitions are reflected in the collections in which his work can be found, including National Gallery of Art, Kingston, Jamaica; San Jose Museum of Art, San Jose, CA;  Republic of Senegal, National Art Collection; Cosima Hotel, Tokoyo, Japan; Guenter Paal & Assoc, Stuttgart, Germany.

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