scape | Southern California Art Projects & Exhibitions

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Brad Durham

My first solo show was in 1983. By 1989 the element that has formed my life’s work, the Landscape, had emerged. At first the landscapes were informed by the Symbolist school. The works Redon, Ryder, Blake and Whistler as well as 13th century Alchemist prints guided me. Their imagery, along with the writings of Rudolf Steiner and Madame Blavatsky, formed the narrative within these paintings; an effort to create a dialogue between the sacred and the corporeal. The corporeal landscapes were minimal, suggestive and were used as a counter point to the imagery of the Alchemist sacred geometries that hovered above them.

Early on in my career I was invited by Aurabora Press to do a residency in San Francisco. With their master printer I did things that, technically speaking, shouldn’t be done. However, by allowing the uncontrolled markings, smudges and “what ifs” of the process to remain unresolved, meaningful works were created. This method allowed all the conscious and unconscious “voices and paths” to show, thus welcoming the evidence of process as essential in creating an intimate and authentic narrative - works informed by time and thought. This way of seeing quickly entered into my paintings.

Over time the marks and smudges of process evolved into unique and independent identities hovering within the landscapes. These abstractions now dialogued with the representation of the landscapes. In many ways my paintings today are not unlike my first landscapes – they are an effort to visually explore the world that exists between the known and the unknown and in so doing create a meaningful and sensual dialogue with the viewer.

Brad Durham

Brad Durham
Passage, 2014
Oil on canvas
33 x 30"