South California Street cluster
About the Exhibition For ArtWalk Ventura:
A collaborative exhibition featuring the intriguing works of Stephen Babcock and the elusive art of Lorien Rennie.
The often sensual themes present in Stephen Babcock’s creations derive from the artist’s fascination with the feminine form and the mysterious obscurities of letters, numbers and time. He is intrigued by artifacts and techniques used in early filmmaking and uses copper and gold leafing to pull light through his works which range from life-size images of vintage motorcycles to illuminated "feminine icons" (think angelic Ziegfeld girls).
Using paint, digital photographs, and found objects, Babcock breathes fresh life into what he calls, "the hidden beauty of evidence of use."
“I like seeing signs of depleting permanence: age, wear and tear, things that allude to a story that’s been going on for quite some time and then, modify it with a 'what if…' That’s what’s behind all of my art, suggesting 'there’s more here than you see, the whole is greater than the sum.' ”
Babcock finds inspiration in the sensuality of Gil Elvgren and Robert McGinnis, the directness of Ed Ruscha, the illuminations of Alfred Cheney Johnston and the complexity of Handiedan.
Lorien Rennie turns love, evolution and personal transformation inside out using oil paints, pen and ink and bold colors to reveal her interpretations of the world.
"I feel like we each have a unique world vision and we learn so much when we can translate that to one another. Communication is essential to life and the language is art.”
Rennie describes her style tendencies as Expressionism mixed with Modernism and Surrealism. “Exploring my personal experience with color while learning to use it as a language.”
Drawn to the romanticism of Hudson River School Landscapes, her most recent series, Private Islands, incorporates abstract shapes, and luministic features reminiscent of the works of modernist, Arthur Dove. Her use of primary colors: golden yellow, deep reds and blues, paired with somber, sometimes dark environments give her paintings an ethereal, fantasy feel.
Other artistic influences most evident in Rennie’s work include Emil Nolde, Max Ernst, Egon Schiele, Zdzisław Beksiński, Nicole Eisenman and Kerry James Marshall.