Parris Patton

Parris Patton
Parris Patton at The Good Luck Gallery
Exhibition dates: May 11 – May 26, 2019
Reception: May 11, 7-10pm

Parris Patton presents a series of plaster, stone, and mixed media sculptures, exploring his admittedly complicated relationship to classical form and materials, and the fraught quest for an unattainable paradigm. The works largely depict fragments of figures -- torsos with missing limbs, partial faces, or cherubic stances -- that recur in museums of classical antiquity. More modern interjections evoke Picasso or Henry Moore in their visceral tactility. Stagings and shrine-like accumulations of flowers, shells, and also assemblagist gestures like cake plates and cured wood all complicate the aesthetic in gently deconstructive ways.

The individual sculptures are made mostly of unpainted plaster, which is both plentiful and pleasing to Patton’s technique. Working intuitively from seeds of an idea, the practical qualities of the plaster as a hand- and mold-making material work well; the resulting shades and surfaces yet resemble stone. This discourse between the commonplace and the elevated is a large part of what animates the sculptures. And because process is so key to an understanding of the work, Patton will install the work in a devised environment recreating his actual working studio space with painted walls, inventive lighting, works in progress, benches, molds, tools, detritus, all arrayed across the gallery in a chic and dusty bohemian chaos.

Revealing his process in a way takes the mystery out of it. Sculpting is, Patton reminds us, by and large a manual labor job. “All I have to do is get physically involved with a chunk of material,” he says, and something will happen. One large sculpture is pink alabaster, requiring hydraulic- and hand-chiseling. As with shaping clay, Patton is deeply engaged with a sculpting process that’s reductive rather than additive, the kind of vision where the figure is revealed or coaxed from within the material, as if by magic.

Instilled with an early awareness that the pinnacles of classical art were out of reach of most mortal artists, Patton has nevertheless persisted in a manner that reclaims the aesthetic for himself, for his own purposes. It’s impossible not to recognize references to, for example, the Venus de Milo among the statuary; but at the same instant the strong presence of an assertively subversive voice makes itself known.

The Good Luck Gallery
945 Chung King Road, Los Angeles, Ca 90012 - 213-625-0935 - WED-SUN 12-6PM
For further inquiries contact:
Paige Wery - - cell: 323-243-0658

Event Details

May 11 - May 26, 2019
Every Day
7:00pm - 10:00pm

More Information

The Good Luck Gallery