London Free Press
Two Toronto artists are featured in a new exhibition at a Wortley Village gallery.
The show of work by Robert Davidovitz and Lisa Johnson opens Tuesday at Westland Gallery.
“They bring together two different sensibilities when it comes to the handling of paint,” wrote Troy Ouellette,
“Robert’s textural and woven paint compositions reference textiles and digital culture. In the past year, Davidovitz has been exploring geometric imagery and the illusion of three-dimensional space in his woven paintings.
Davidovitz recently started using computer software in his preliminary drawing process, said Ouellette.
“I realized that pixilation is not unlike weaving,” Davidovitz said in a written statement. “So I became more interested in the grid and the pixel itself as the building block.”
In his new series of work, spheres, cubes and other pixelated geometric shapes are included alongside computer icons such as Cursors, Volume and the AutoCad Explode tool.
“Since icon designs are reliant on the grid structure, this makes them adaptable to the weaving process, although the technique may not be obvious from a distance,” said Ouellette.
“The traditional practice of weaving these contemporary subjects creates a sense of irony. Whereas on the screen these symbols are always suggesting action, here they are frozen in the present.
In contrast, Johnson’s paintings use colour and mark-making to great effect, said Ouellette.
“While her gestural approach shows an affinity for action painting, she also draws on elements of a Baroque esthetic to add drama and emotion. These abstracted landscapes in the exhibition are painted in studio from memories gathered during the process of sketching and painting on location. In these paintings she seeks to capture the spirit of a landscape — the emotional connection one can discover in a meaningful place.”
Said Johnson: “I love trying to capture the feeling of space and movement around me; the changing light and weather; the raw overwhelming power of nature rather than the tamed and still.”
Davidovitz is a graduate of York University, an Israeli-born multi-disciplinary artist living and working in Toronto. His work is in private collections in Canada, the U.S. and Europe.
Johnson, a graduate of the Ontario College of Art and Design, has been shown in solo and group shows throughout Ontario and can be found in numerous private and corporate collections in Canada, the U.S. and Europe.