The New Contemporary Art Magazine

Tag: Roq La Rue

With a mix of dark humor and an impressive skill at creating inviting, yet dangerous worlds, the artist known as Bub has caught our eye. Click above to read our new interview with the artist and his new body of work, before it's too late.

Chris Berens

Twenty-one years ago, Roq La Rue Gallery opened its doors in Seattle, and a new group show at the space, “Ace Of Spades, Queen Of Diamonds” offers a window into that history. The line-up is considerable, and owner Kristen Anderson says it’s “by no means comprehensive, given how many artists we’ve exhibited over the years, but it still represents a nice little microcosm.” The show runs through Sept. 6 at the gallery.

Travis Louie

Inspired by the John Foxx instrumental “A Beautiful Ghost,” the gallery Roq La Rue asked several artists “to do their take on the title theme.” The result is a group show currently running at the gallery through March 3, with work from Brian Despain, Rick Araluce, Nannette Cherry, Kai Carpenter, Travis Louie, Jeff Jacobson, Kate MacDowell, Peter Ferguson, and Bella Ormseth.

Kai Carpenter

After a hiatus, Roq La Rue opens its doors again with “Lush Life 6.” The Seattle gallery re-opens on Oct. 11, continuing a string of group shows under the “Lush Life” banner that have taken place throughout its two-decade history. Owner Kirsten Anderson was busy during the two-year hiatus, founding Creatura House and a conservation/educational group.
Seattle based artist Casey Weldon, first featured in HF Vol. 32, paints colorful and glowing works with nostalgic pop references and a touch of humor. In recent years, his paintings have become increasingly mystical, taking otherwise everyday places and animals and giving them a luminous, candy-colored twist. For his current exhibition at Roq la Rue gallery in Seattle, "Hastemaker", Weldon builds upon his vibrantly colored, dreamlike world. It goes far beyond his "cute-gross" style, as he describes it.
To the artists in Roq La Rue's upcoming exhibition "Lush Life: Reverie", the lushness of late summer means bright pops of color, surreal fertile gardens, sensual heroines, and luxurious depictions of nature. Opening July 30th, the Seattle gallery is bringing back their "Lush Life" exhibition series with a newfound sense of fantasy. The exhibit features artists that have always explored natural themes to varying degree; Adrian Cox, Amanda Manitach, Ashley Eliza Williams, Casey Curran, Casey Weldon (HF Vol. 32), Christian Rex Van Minnen (HF Vol. 25), Eric Wert (HF Vol, 32), Erin Kendig, Esao Andrews (HF Vol. 8), Helen Bayly, Jeff Soto (HF Vol. 18), Jonathan Viner (HF Vol. 34), Kazuki Takamatsu (HF Vol. 33 cover artist), Lauren Marx, Laurie Lee Brom, Lowell Poisson, Marco Mazzoni (HF Vol. 20 cover artit), Peter Ferguson, Ryan Heshka, Sam Wolfe Connelly (HF Vol. 32), Scott Hove (HF Collected 3), and Tyna Ontko.

Opening tomorrow, Roq la Rue's new group exhibition "Plus One" gives their artists the opportunity to pair up with their latest inspirations. There are twelve artists in the exhibition, six selected artists and their +1's: HF Vol. 27's Stacey Rozich (+ Matt Craven), John Brophy (+ Deanna Adona), Peter Ferguson (+ Olivier Bonnard), HF Vol. 32 cover artist Travis Louie (+ Dorian Vallejo), Redd Walitzki (+ Meghan Howland), and Amanda Manitach (+ Adam Mars). Take a look at our preview after the jump.
Through a unique process of applying thin, translucent layers of monochromatic, acrylic paint to a panel over and over, Travis Louie (HF Vol. 32 cover artist) mimics the effect of 19th-century photography. Though filled with fantastical characters, his works have an effect of verisimilitude much like historical documents from the Victorian and Edwardian periods. For his latest solo show, "Archive of Lost Species," which opens at Roq La Rue Gallery in Seattle on May 7, Louie abandons the studio portrait format we've seen before. Instead, his latests works look like snapshots of strange monsters, sometimes observed in the wild and sometimes interacting with their human counterparts.
The feelings of horror and rapture collide at high speeds when viewing Lauren Marx's work. The St. Louis-based artist creates beautiful vignettes that speak to the cycle of life. Rather than a cleaned-up, Disneyfied verson of nature, her paintings give us raw depictions of birth and death. Influenced my scientific illustrations and the Baroque period alike, Marx's maximalist mixed-media works present these cyclical phenomena in visually appealing ways, often fusing the chaotic elements of nature into stylized compositions with an emphasis on design. Marx's solo show, "American Wilderness," opens at Roq La Rue Gallery in Seattle on May 7.
April is a big month for Seattle's Roq La Rue Gallery, with three shows all opening tonight. In their main room, Peter Ferguson presents a new collection of rust-hued paintings set sometime in the 19th century for his solo show, "Prime Meridian." In this series, anachronistic villagers and city dwellers encounter increasingly more surreal characters than previously seen in his past work. Monsters invade old-fashioned pubs, schools, and manors — perhaps pointing to the monstrosities of the colonial period, the real-world context his work can't escape.
On March 5, Seattle's Roq La Rue Gallery will present two solo shows from artists with distinct aesthetic sensibilities. Sam Wolfe Connelly (who was featured in HF Vol. 32) continues his exploration of the subtly sinister with a new series of drawings and paintings called "And Here I Lay." Often set in (nearly) empty houses in remote locales, his work takes on the quality of a mysterious shadow one sees in the corner of one's eye. It has an ambiance of foreboding that can't be easily explained. The cityscapes in Liz Brizzi's concurrent show, "Anagrams," are desolate as well, but her busy mixed-media work departs greatly from Wolfe's sparse paintings. Brizzi combines digitally manipulated photography, collage, and painting on wood panel to create portraits of unpopulated metropolises that look familiar yet alien because of their stillness.
Dutch artist Chris Berens (featured in our book Hi-Fructose Collected 3) developed a unique painting technique that lends his work a soft focus, as if watching the fantastical world he depicts through a distorted lens. The artist combines age-old glazing techniques inspired by the Renaissance masters with layers of emulsion, plastic sheets one to three inches thick, and paper. The result is a quilted-looking texture that evokes the sensation of seeing his work through uneven layers of glass. The artist has been laying low until recently, and will debut his first US solo show in four years, "Nethermoor," at Roq La Rue in Seattle on February 5.
The transition from one year into the next inspires us to shed our old attitudes, outlooks, and approaches and start anew. It's no coincidence that many Pagan rituals around the time of Winter Solstice center around the theme of rebirth and regeneration. Seattle's Roq La Rue Gallery taps into this theme for their occult-inspired winter group show "Incantation," featuring artists such as Casey Weldon (covered in HF Vol. 32), Peter Ferguson, Redd Walitzki, Erica Levine, Barnaby Whitfield, Chie Yoshii and others. The exhibition is on view through January 31. Take a look at some of the works below.
Opening this evening at Roq La Rue Gallery in Seattle, John Brophy's solo show "The Saddest Heart on the Holy Mountain" features a new, surreal series of oil paintings on mounted paper that explore the continuity between European art history and the digital age. Though hand painted, Brophy's figures are based on 3D-modeling software and have a computerized look that stands in contrast to the many pre-internet art historical allusions in his work. One piece features a floating urinal as a shout out to Marcel Duchamp while another work includes a lollipop with an icon-like portrait of Jesus holding a credit card. Brophy's accumulations of discordant imagery alludes to the "anything goes" mentality of today's art world and posits science and capitalism as the religions of Western society today.
Sometimes our crassest jokes reveal our hidden anxieties, while other times we create beautiful rituals surrounding that which we fear. It's human nature to make light of death in order to not be consumed by the often incomprehensible idea of mortality. Examining a spectrum of responses to this difficult subject, Seattle gallery Roq La Rue recently collaborated with The Piranha Shop for a touring exhibition, "Boxes of Death." Featuring well-known artists from the Pop Surrealist and low brow currents — like Camille Rose Garcia, Isabel Samaras and Casey Weldon — the show hit stops in LA, Portland and San Francisco and will be exhibited in Seattle for one night only at The Piranha Shop tomorrow, October 17.
Casey Weldon (featured in our current issue, Hi-Fructose Vol. 32) illuminates nature scenes with his bright, electronic color palettes. His latest series of paintings, "Novel Relic," will debut at Seattle's Roq La Rue tonight, August 7, alongside Femke Hiemstra's solo show "Warten am Waldrand" (previewed here).
Femke Hiemstra's work always tickles the senses with its sumptuous textures and whimsical details and her upcoming solo show, "Warten am Waldrand," at Roq La Rue in Seattle is no exception. The artist (recently featured in a special sketchbook section in Hi-Fructose Vol. 29) is known for the storybook quality of her drawings and paintings. But beyond the naive exterior, her animal vignettes sometimes take on a darker tone. Hiemstra does not strive for a cartoonish "creepy-cute" aesthetic, but rather invokes notes of somber emotions to give her characters full dimensionality. Her playful works tap into her viewers' nostalgia for childhood, but the allegorical paintings offer plenty of opportunity for viewers to see reflections of themselves and the world around them.
Chie Yoshii's latest exhibition at Roq La Rue in Seattle took its title from a quote by Carl Jung: "Human existence is to kindle a light in the darkness of mere being.” Titled "In the Darkness of Mere Being," her new series of paintings was heavily influenced by the ideas of this pioneering psychologist.
Whereas his past work brought viewers in close, like a whisper, Andy Kehoe's newest series of mixed-media paintings is more like a cry from a mountain top. Kehoe explores the broad terrain of the mystical forests we've visited before, opening a new chapter in the vignettes he has been weaving through his past solo shows in recent years. He creates depth by alternating layers of paint with resin, giving his paintings a shadow-box effect. His latest body of work — premiering this Thursday, June 5, at Roq La Rue in Seattle for his solo show "Inner Mystic" — marks a turning point in his aesthetic.

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