Hour by Hour – Curated by Marc Trujillo – at Q Art Salon – 03/05/16 to 04/22/16

What: Hour by Hour
When: 03/05/16 to 04/22/16
Where: Q Art Salon, Santa Ana, Orange County, California

***Please scroll down to view a photo slideshow from the event***


And so from hour to hour, we ripe and ripe, and then, from hour to hour, we rot and rot; and thereby hangs a tale.


William Shakespeare, As You Like It, Act II, sc. 7

I’ve been struggling with figure painting in my own work and welcome any opportunity to learn and to be inspired. It is with this in mind that I drive to downtown Santa Ana, Orange County and wander through their First Saturday’s art walk. It’s a sleepy Latino neighborhood with an Artist’s Village made up of over 40 galleries. There are also artist live-work spaces, shops and cafes. The architecture is a mix of Spanish details, old fountains and ornate moulding exist side-by-side with industrial brick buildings.

I’ve come for Hour by Hour, an exhibition curated by Marc Trujillo at the Q Art Salon. The exhibition is an invitation to study in Rome with the artists in the show: Marc Trujillo, David Simon, Sean Cheetham, Michael Bergt, Alyssa Monks, Hollis Dunlap, Brian Booth Craig and Daniel Sprick.
(*click here for link to Rome Art Workshops)

The title of the show comes from a line from Shakespeare’s “As You Like It.” It speaks to man’s mortality and the paradox that is embodied in the passage of time. Life taken as a whole is transient, especially when looking back at the past. At the same time, our experiential perception feels long if we were to count down the hours to some future point. Does anticipation feel longer than reflection? The figurative work in this exhibit is an ideal vehicle to address the theme of mortality.

That life is fleeting is hinted at by the oil sketches and finished alla prima paintings of Sean Cheetham, and the paintings of sky by Marc Trujillo. Both deal with an economy of open time to work because the model is captured for only a moment. Mastery from decades of painting makes it possible to squeeze the most from this opportunity.

That art can embody duration and is enduring, is touched on by the sculpture of David Simon. Stillness and timelessness is revealed in a pose and grounded by material used to create the work, in this case it’s bronze. Michael Bergt’s egg tempura paintings are also laboriously crafted, layer by layer. Egg Tempura dries quickly and must be built up in dozens of layers of detailed crosshatching.

The foil to the lines spoken by Shakespeare’s melancholic character, Jaques, (in the quote which contains “hour by hour”) comes perhaps in the structure of the play as a whole. It’s a pastoral comedy whose main theme is love, from an affirmation of true and enduring love, to a critique of the sentimental. Love and humor (and absurdity) can be an antidote to mortality and a melancholic weltanschauung.

This art exhibit tempts one to fall in love with the art and heed the call to study in Rome. It intimates that the passage of time can be filled hour by hour with meaningful labor and with play.

I encourage you to make a trip down to Santa Ana if you’ve not seen this exhibit. Q Art Salon can be reached at info@qartsalon.com or at (714) 835-8833.

1. Disclosure: Marc Trujillo is currently my painting professor.