Philip Ayers and William Itter: Paintings, Drawings, and Watercolors

Exhibition Dates: May 26, 2009 - June 20, 2009

Reception: May 28, 6 - 8 pm

 Philip Ayers

Philip Ayers

 William Itter

William Itter

The Painting Center is pleased to present Philip Ayers and William Itter: Paintings, Drawings, and Watercolors, in the Main Gallery from May 26 - June 20, 2009.

Philip Ayers describes the start of his interest in root forms: “At first I noticed them because I wanted to destroy them and rid my garden of these insidious ‘weeds’, but as they piled up on the compost, I got to looking and thinking more intensely about the meaning of what I was doing and how parallel to the larger world that was. Contrastingly, at the same time, I kept returning to them, as purely botanical forms, and how they mirrored the human body.” These drawings and paintings are in large measure a personification of roots, suggesting feelings of order and entropy. Through gesture, there is a strong suggestion that these are figurative works. Ayers has for sometime, been absorbed in the representational and metaphorical potential of the mundane. Now, this exhibit shows another thread of that output – focused on botanical subjects, transformed by the convergence of the expressive and the illustrative.

William Itter states, “The closer one looks at Nature the greater the detail one discovers.” William Itter’s paintings and drawings represent a heightened view of Nature by abstractly revealing its details as serial progressive interactions based on natural form structures. Itter states, “I am compelled to construct a surface field for the unfolding imagination — equivocal and ironic, where myriad thoughts are found and represented. The picture plane is a place where reversing figure-ground relationships seem inescapable and bound by paradoxical meanings. The simultaneous interplay of line, shape, and color presents an alternating subject continually shifting in visual posture that proposes a timeless mutable character.” For Itter, painting has always been about the transformation of nature and art. The watercolors in this exhibition were each conceived as preparatory studies for large oil paintings, most of them as grisailles in search of color textures and spatial light contrasts and their thematic progressions.