SEAN TAYLOR "It's all fun and games" Oil on Panel 25" x 27" SOLD
SEAN TAYLOR "Episode 1,World Domination "Oil on Panel, 12"x14" SOLD
SEAN TAYLOR "Atomic Family" Oil on Panel, 12"x14" SOLD
“Hot Fun,” Taylor’s latest body of work features large-scale oil paintings that take a nostalgic look at the AmericanDream. Juxtaposing Cold War era imagery with contemporary summer fun, the result is a whirlwind of beach scenes and carousel rides, scuba divers and air traffic controllers. The emphasis is now on figures, 1950’s debutantes, sunbathers on the beach, couples meeting on the boardwalk, images of the distant past connecting to images of the present.
“If I had to sum up this series of paintings at SOMA I’d say: ‘George Orwell on holiday at the beach.’ My paintings are like big jigsaw puzzles,
I put them together and build the image with results that often surprise me. These paintings have a lot of references and allusions, Orwell of course, Salinger and Vonnegut, James Bond, uranium miners, the Wildwood Boardwalk, Mister Softee, and the Greek Myth to name a few. But you might say those are always my references. What can I say? I’m a sub-real postmodernist with a license to paint.”
Taylor’s trademark style is recognizable in the atmospheric blues and grays with distant muted horizons. Taylor’s grand scale and luscious paint quality combined with these beach-life motifs make this show a must-see for all Fine Art lovers in town this summer.
Sean Taylor is a graduate of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, he has shown at many galleries in Philadelphia and across the region. This will be his first show at SOMA NewArt Gallery.
SEAN TAYLOR “HOT FUN: Further Examination of the American Dream” Artist’s Statement
The American Dream – ‘work hard and you can attain whatever you want.’ It
takes a lot to keep such an ideal afloat, and in spite of its
theoretical pitfalls the American Dream is very much alive and kicking.
To examine such a concept requires an equally complex equation. In this
respect my paintings challenge the viewer, they should be read closely
as well as from a distance. They offer at once a serious and humorous
metaphorical commentary on the current state of the American Dream.
I utilize imagery from the recent past, “Hot Fun” is designed to
examine the current status of the American Dream. I found that
combining these early Cold War era scenarios with a contemporary field
creates a connection between that era and the present. These
connections are not arbitrary. I believe the decisions and actions
taken by the U.S.A. during that period have had serious consequences. I
am also commenting on the present-day movement to recreate the fear and
paranoia that was typical of the Cold War era. I create my
paintings to be physically "present” involved contraptions in and of
themselves. The construction of the painting support is as important to
me as the actual painted image. Many of the paintings are multi-paneled
”sectionals, connected by an array of bolts and hinges. The resulting
structure is vaguely reminiscent of the design in a medieval altarpiece
or of the page of a comic book. The individual panels are at times
covered with canvas that further dissect the image in a sublime
grid-like system, often fading into the thick layers of applied paint.
Its sections may contain a figure, or serve, as a domain the figure
seems to ignore. This system of compartments is intended to introduce
dimensions and themes to the work including the passing of time or
memory, society's limitations and constraints, and the need to question
and examine what lies beneath the surface.
The juxtaposition of
a cotton-candy colored palette with evocative imagery is another facet
of the work. My plan is that the audience be lulled by the pastel
colors, only to be forced to reckon with the challenging narrative that
is implied in the imagery. Another example of such dichotomy lies in
the presentation of the figures; some of the characters exist in an
ethereal state as if caught in a trance, while others are more
realized, perhaps there to observe the occurrence.
is to provide an arena that contrasts nostalgia for the past with the
speed of the present everyday life. The world is full of duality and
nuance, and I attempt to capture that in my paintings. Aesthetically, I
draw from an interest in things classical, a minor obsession with
Titian, and an admiration for the work of contemporary neo-realist
painters. The subject matter comes in part from my own experience and
memories. I feel a need to examine the question: "How did we get here?"
I am curious about the dilemma that America now finds itself in. I
believe that the root of our problems and success lies in the actions
of our past. That is why I refer to imagery from recent decades, in
order to zero in on this theory. Ultimately in "Hot Fun" I am
suggesting a simple thought: that we might benefit from questioning the
exact nature of ‘desire’ and the weight it carries in the American