Where: bG Gallery, Bergamot Station, 2525 Michigan Ave #A2, Santa Monica, CA 90404 Hours: 12:00 – 5:00pm, Tuesday – Saturday

When: July 24 – August 23, 2021
Opening Reception: Saturday, July 24, 2021, 2:00 – 6:00pm (PDT)
Workshop Event: Saturday, August 7, 2021, 3:00 – 6:00pm (PDT)

Gay Summer Rick, Exit Here

bG Gallery is pleased to present its seventh solo exhibition with painter, Gay Summer Rick. Originally slated for 2020’s exhibition calendar and postponed due to the pandemic, Rick had conceived of a wholly different body of work to show. Envisioning aerial landscapes suffused with the light and atmosphere, Rick undertook preparation for the exhibition by traveling, what she terms, a very “intentional itinerary” between Los Angeles and New York. At the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic she was forced, as was the rest of the world, to reevaluate her focus and turn it inwards toward family, friends, and safety. 

In conversations with those selfsame family and friends, Rick began to recognize a common thread, the ardent desire to be somewhere, anywhere else. In subsequent conversations she made a point to ask, “If you could be anywhere right now, where would you be?” Based on the responses received, Rick’s “intentional itinerary” was transmuted into an “interventional itinerary” and her depictions of that itinerary shifted to match. As much as she used it as a tool to transport herself, Rick’s newest paintings are meant as a means to help viewers emerge from their collective lockdowns and to carry them to inspirational places. The resultant locales are intended to show “moments of joy,” where her audience is “enveloped in a quiet calm, holding onto big dreams, and embracing hope for the brightest days ahead.” The series is a gorgeous celebration of our return to life. With a wide open lens, Rick explores location, palette, and the unexpected, championing optimism, peace, and joy.

Gay Summer Rick’s primary preoccupation is the search for beauty and has found her spending years culling urban landscapes for hidden treasure. A longtime Los Angeles transplant from New York, Rick has used painting to reclaim home and her place in ever changing cityscapes. Rick’s work expresses quiet vibration and the surprising beauty of commonplace elements found in the urban environment. Her work describes this in a dreamlike yet familiar manner. Rick’s paintings are created using palette knives and layered veils of color, and they articulate the pulse of life where the city meets the sea, rendering her work as energetic as the tides that pull the ocean to and from the shore.

bG Gallery specializes in accomplished artists who regularly engage with and travers traditional art ideologies such as expressive-conceptual, insider-outsider, high-low, figurative-abstract, among many others. bG’s aim is to bring authentic art with elements of human spirit back to the forefront of the contemporary art scene.

Artist’s Exhibition Statement

 “In 2019 I started preparing for a 2020 solo exhibition, creating a body of work that was to be focused primarily on views from above. I have for many years painted images inspired by window-seat views while in flight and on the tarmac, but never had an exhibition that was predominantly aerial. For inspiration I created a very intentional itinerary and traveled between LA and NY with some additional stops to ensure the flights approached my target cities from North and South for the most interesting and varied views. In late 2019 work commenced on these atmospheric, abstract, aerial views. Every day I relived great adventures, traveling these magical routes through paint on canvas in the studio.

“When the pandemic hit, my art practice froze as I watched family and friends working in healthcare head to the front line. I found myself living very close to the danger and devastation. I was shaken. As most of us were staying ‘safe at home’ I made it a point to connect with dear friends and family. While we all agreed it was best to stay safe, the recurring message was that people felt confined and wished they could be someplace else. So, I began asking everyone, ‘If you could be anywhere right now, where would you be?’ The responses resonated. I found myself modifying my work plan from transporting the viewer through a very ‘intentional itinerary’ over two of my favorite cities–Los Angeles and New York– to what became an ‘Interventional Itinerary’, one that not only addressed the desires of those who were locked down, but one that really took the focus off the moment and shifted the narrative with a very positive and resilient outlook. Interventional Itinerary takes the viewer out of their current reality to a place where they may find themselves in moments of joy, enveloped in a quiet calm, holding onto big dreams, and embracing great hope for the brightest days ahead.”