Many people would say or simply agree that the world is made up of opposites, pros and cons, yes and no, black and white. While grey areas do exist, it is in the human propensity to be either/or.
When Kevin Balboa was going through the motions of identifying his subject matter, he considered finding interesting ideas and figures in uninteresting or mundane objects. This is perhaps what led to the core artist tool of still life painting. The long history of still life painting has served as training ground for countless artists, as it continues to carry out a mission of documenting objects frozen in time and context.
What sets it apart is that in merging familiar objects into unfamiliar forms, it very slightly crosses into the realms of abstraction and even possibly surrealist depiction. Those familiar with his earlier efforts will see traces of his interventions, such as buds so alive and throbbing – they are like eyes looking back at the viewer. In a progression from his prior series of black and white automatist works, Kevin Balboa channels that energy into the classical genre of still lifes by juxtaposing interesting and uninteresting images — a mise-en-scène of familiar objects into unfamiliar forms: a visual chimera if you will.
As some sort of dialogue, the works in the space are grouped into arrangements and illuminations. One is greeted by the former, peeking through the entrance, and deeper into the space, the darker corner holds the latter.
The high light (no pun intended) of these works is the use of candlelight. While it is not new, these particular works push the imagery outside the comforts of a still life. The flickering candle emits a soft glow that slowly yet steadily promises to take the entire canvas as its own. The precision of the objects depicted beside it are mellowed down, reduced to viewers in awe together with the humans outside the canvas.
Navigating a world emerging from chaos, he is a traveler, sojourner, and artist; and has turned his attention to fleeting moments of light, time, and life. Balboa takes his brush to canvas depicting halftruths and realistic fabrications, and in his trail leaving A Record of Non-Existent Things.
Exhibition Notes and Exhibition Design by Francisco Lee