Ray Kleinlein: Recent Works

October 20 - November 30, 2007

TromboneThe exhibit Ray Kleinlein : Recent Works will open October 20 at the Atkinson Museum on the campus of Hampden-Sydney College and will remain on view through November 30. Kleinlein teaches at both Hampden-Sydney College and Longwood University.

According to Kleinlein, "As a contemporary artist who deliberately chooses to work within the narrow parameters of a traditional genre and to employ a traditional mode of representation, my challenge is to create work that embraces tradition (which I am convinced remains vital and relevant for our time) while simultaneously transcending the sense of nostalgia and decadence often attributed to it."

"While from a distance my paintings may seem illusionistic, the technique denies neither the physical texture of the paint nor the flat surface of the canvas. In this way my paintings integrate traditional illusionism and contemporary formalism and exist simultaneously as abstract arrangements of light, shape, and color and convincing representations of actual objects. It is the formal composition more than the subjects themselves that conveys an intentionally constructed sense of order and clarity."

"The subjects I paint are seemingly unremarkable objects which we encounter daily but tend not to notice. Ultimately my work is about the simple act of looking at the overlooked and the pleasures derived from seeing beauty in the ordinary."

The artist reception and gallery walk was held on Thursday, October 25, at 4:30 PM. The Esther Thomas Atkinson Museum is located on College Road at Hampden-Sydney College, Hampden-Sydney, Virginia. Hours are Tuesday - Friday, 12:30 PM - 4:30 PM and other times by appointment. For more information about the museum and other programs, please contact Director-Curator Angie Way at 434-223-6134.

ARTIST'S STATEMENT

The formal language I employ is a synthesis of traditional and contemporary aesthetics, particularly those associated with geometric abstraction and minimalism. While from a distance (or reproduced in images) the paintings may seem illusionistic, the technique disguises neither the physical texture of the paint nor the flat surface of the canvas. In this way my paintings integrate traditional illusionism with contemporary formalism and exist simultaneously as formal arrangements of light, shape, and color and convincing representations of actual objects.

The subjects I paint are the seemingly unremarkable objects which we encounter daily but tend not to notice. Though the objects are chosen for their visual interest rather than symbolic meaning, the subjects rarely remain neutral. It is always interesting for me to hear the personal associations viewers bring to banal but familiar subjects (such as a corrugated cardboard box) and what meanings or feelings they evoke.

The objects have been removed from their everyday context and deliberately centered in an environment that is timeless and placeless. This composition is intended to convey a deliberately constructed sense of order, clarity, and reverence. Ultimately my work is about the simple act of looking at the overlooked and the pleasures derived from seeing ordinary things in an extraordinary way.