Only Big Ideas Turn Into Large Art

Works by Mark Acetelli and Jennyfer Stratman
free    |  Dec 5, 2022  |  4:00PM - 6:00PM

The bigger the idea, the bigger the artwork. In Only Big Ideas Turn Into Large Art, scale takes center stage in this group exhibition of large artworks by contemporary artists. Large walls need big art with gigantic ideas for massive minds and impressive people. Ideas are formless like gasses—they fill the vessel that holds them, animating stolid objects into dynamic artworks. Ranging in topics from contextualization to the supernatural, from self-determination to unbridled capitalism, Only Big Ideas Turn Into Large Art is an alchemical exploration of making the medium the message—in a big way.
Marco Schmidli’s work is known for its sensitive surfaces and subtle textures. He has developed specialized techniques for applying and layering color. Swiss-born, Schmidli studied photography and fine art in Switzerland and Rome. He worked as a photographer and painter in Zurich before moving to California where he started making backdrops for luxury photography. Working with top photographers, art directors, and set designers; Schmidli has set the industry standard in his work with clients such as Vogue, Vanity Fair, and more.

Christina Major is a portrait painter interested in the ways the identity of both artist and subject can coexist in a painting. Major expands on traditional portrait painting by cataloging her memories and thoughts along with the thoughts of the subject—at times recording quotes from the person depicted—by painting under, into, and over the subject in her handwriting. Major’s hand is visible both in the brushstrokes and in the cursive writing, preserving her identity in a “readable” way both literally and through graphology, or handwriting analysis.

Jonjo Elliott is a mixed-media artist working with a range of materials, from paper and paint, to skate ramps and chairs. Working from his studio in Leicestershire, England, his vibrant works are inspired by domestic spaces and his large-scale still-lifes bring color and delight into the homes of his collectors. His work is reminiscent of Fauvism and his collections encourage a youthful candor. Plants thrive in environments bathed in color and pattern. His focus is on the crossover between abstraction and representation, and he is constantly exploring where painting can take him and the viewer as a means of expression.

With a career spanning 20 years and having created more than 250 large sculpture pieces, D’Arcy Bellamy is a seasoned metal sculptor. Bellamy focuses on making human-scale, abstract, minimalist, and often kinetic sculptures exclusively from steel pipe. Bellamy’s work is characterized by flowing lines, strong negative space, originality, movement, and shadows. The work has a rough, unrefined, spontaneous, and playful nature, often resulting in a smile from the viewer. With his innovative process of subtractive fabrication, Bellamy has created a large body of original, engaging work that is varied yet consistent, becoming more refined over time.

Mark Acetelli's paintings awaken your sense of exploration and demand a new discovery. A chemistry of complexity and spontaneity, lyrical abstraction of frenzied marks, many of which previously lay hidden, buried beneath strong layers of self-taught -expression. Those truths, first obscured and then obvious, aim to engage the viewer, allowing them to explore their own interpretation. In his work, Mark seeks to evoke a feeling rather than depict a defined image. He uses primarily oils and encaustics to create thickly layered canvases with emotive bursts of color. His works show a world where imagination and reality come together. Mark Acetelli was born in Detroit and resides in Los Angeles. His oil and mixed media works have been exhibited and collected worldwide.

Alea Pinar Du Pre’s technique involves a fusion of materials, outlooks, and diverse inspirations. With layered materials such as acrylics, printed elements, and gilt captured under an epoxy lens, Pinar Du Pre finds a physical representation of the layered reality she aims to depict in her subjects. Paying tribute to her main influences, Pinar Du Pre describes her style as "Jugendstil Pop-Art". Distinguishing herself from Pop-Art, which is largely stimulated by the iconography of materialism, Pinar Du Pre’s vision is intimate and intends to subvert the genre.

German artist Thitz puts a new spin on the tradition of the artist on the Grand Tour: he paints city scenes upon paper bags scavenged in the places he visits. The bags are opened out flat for maximum coverage, and the paintings are executed with acrylics in energetic delineations of bird's-eye views of individual landmarks. With his bag art, Thitz takes Pop Art to the next level: he intensifies it and integrates it with everyday reality, art, life, and sensorial experience. His subjects and motifs are born of wide travels. The cities and places depicted can be immediately recognized, but they do not merely portray views. They are transformations into the colorful, lineal weave of Thitz’s art. The rich, infinitely detailed circumstances are translated into a vivid and diverse narrative tissue of line-like events.

Originally a ceramicist, Jennyfer Stratman replaced fired clay with larger-scale bronze, steel, and mixed media sculptures yet retained a delicacy, intimacy, and intricacy imbued from the ceramic process. There is a metaphorical interplay between the natural imagery Stratman uses and its multiple meanings. Particularly, the artist imagines trees and branches as a figurative link between the natural environment and our physical presence. The implied internal landscape of the body can also be reflected in how our surroundings from birth affect our sense of identity. Today she is a full-time established artist and splits her time between her studios operating in Phoenix, Arizona, and Melbourne, Australia.

Victoria Kovalenchikova is inspired by the connection between all humans, and in her series, “Earth,” where she explores the planet as a work of art. Using google images to explore the Earth in its entirety, she plays with angles and textures. Originally from Mogliev, Belarus, Kovalenchikova says the following about her practice: “Although we humans may feel like disconnected, independent fragments, Earth reminds us that we are all united on this place: notes within a larger symphony of life. No different from the massive whale in the ocean or the tiniest needle of a pine tree. There is no way out; to save ourselves we must save our home.”

Since the opening of Artplex Gallery in 2018, the gallery continues to be one of the world's leading art galleries specializing in high-quality, original contemporary art representing a broad spectrum of major international artists. Right at home in West Hollywood and within immediate proximity to its sister gallery Artspace Warehouse, Artplex Gallery is an expansive modern space that specializes in international urban, pop, graffiti, figurative, and abstract art catering to the visual impact.