Where We Are Now

Recent work by Samantha Fields, Benicia Gantner and Coleen Sterritt

June 11 - August 6, 2022

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Where We Are Now

Coleen Sterritt: A Blue Note, 2022.
Wood, gourds, rubber, dryer lint, ink, acrylic paint. 58 x 16 x 32"

Benicia Gantner: Flight Figure 4, 2022.
Vinyl collage, spray paint on mylar. 28 x 36 x 17"

Samantha Fields: Worlds within Worlds, 2022.
Acrylic on canvas panel, 24 x 38"

Traywick Contemporary is pleased to announce We Are Now, an exhibition of recent work by three California based artists: Samantha Fields (Los Angeles), Benicia Gantner (Marin County) and Coleen Sterritt (Los Angeles).

Reminiscing about time spent and time lost, this exhibition explores our changing world as we look back over the recent past, and think ahead to what the future might hold. Each artist relies on real-world materials and imagery to create work that reflects shared experiences through observational study of daily life. Suggesting moments of transition, their work encourages viewers to look more closely at the fragile world around us, and to experience firsthand the possibility of transformation.

An artist that typically relies on travel for her creative process, Samantha Fields looks for the changing light and shifting atmosphere of specific locations in her attempts to capture the ineffable in her paintings. Confined to home during the pandemic, Fields began looking to the outer world from her windows, to escape her confines through the pinpoint-focused view of scopes, which in turn introduced new vistas swimming in color and light. The experiential nature of Fields’ paintings immerses the viewer in fleeting moments: smoke lingering in the sky from nearby fires, the blur of city lights reflected on wet pavement, the blazing sun in unprecedented heat waves, or transient shadows shifting across a nighttime landscape. The transitory flashes she depicts in her paintings – gone nearly as soon as they begin – speak to the ephemeral qualities of both time and beauty.

Well-known for a fascination with the expressive possibilities of materials, Benicia Gantner’s boundless approach allows her to move fluidly between two and three dimensions with both minimal and exuberant gestures. Gantner’s new sculptures explode off the wall, expand out of corners and burst with energetic color and tactility. Her works on paper reverberate from the push and pull of competing influences: organic vs manufactured, analog vs digital and reductive vs cumulative, until a clarity emerges from chaos. While Gantner’s hybrid spaces reflect the fraught relationships of contemporary life, she also describes the work as being about “potential, the act of becoming, and the possibility of what lies between.”

For Coleen Sterritt, improvisation is an important part of a studio practice which includes both sculpture and works on paper. Hers is a deep study in materials, pushing the limits with combinations of forms, often submitting them to the unyielding forces of gravity. She employs collage, assemblage and the readymade in both formal and loose ways, finding inspiration in the cast-off, the imperfect, the used and the leftover. Sterritt focuses on the transmutability of objects as she turns the familiar into something a little alien and strange through endless interventions. She says that her work is “born out of movement and chance, doubt, discomfort and desire” as she attempts to understand the world through her hands, and by doing so, ultimately reveals the “poetic nature of that which is hiding in plain sight.”

View images from the exhibition