Series, pigment on panel, gold leaf on resin, dimensions vary.
Peter Blake Gallery, Laguna Beach
The works included in Exploded mark a new direction in color for Albuquerque. Colors not previously seen in this series of paintings are suddenly present. To call this a new direction in her painting would be accurate but upon closer inspection of the artists career, these colors are found in some of her earliest works, namely the rock and pigment installations she executed in the 1970s and 80s in the Mojave Desert and early installation work both in her Los Angeles studios and in exhibitions. These paintings conjure cosmic visions of time, space and light achieved through form, material and color. Layer upon layer of pigment finds itself suspended and stacked, minutely forming a surface that deceives depth and tricks focus. Concave gold-leafed resin discs echo an ancient form that receive as much as they offer. Albuquerque employs scale and color to take the viewer on a perceptual and psychological journey.
For an artist who moves fluidly from performance work to site-specific installations in extreme environments, from sculpture to painting, and most recently her exploration into film – to find her injecting new elements into these paintings is not surprising. What is surprising is Albuquerque’s continuing sense of wonder and optimism. We rely on artists to help us make sense of the world, to show us beauty, to do the hard work of reflecting, looking and making. We also ask that artists take us out of our own reality. It is here where Albuquerque succeeds.