Thoughtful, theatrical and provocative, “Gas Light Love Bomb” is a celebration of the craft and creativity of conceptual artist Scott Young. Young challenges visitors to reexamine their relationship with romance. Opening on Nov. 4 and running through Dec. 2, the show is K Contemporary’s inaugural exhibition and the ideal stage on which to enact Young’s uniquely narrative style through neon.
“Neon is a really exciting medium, and Scott is one of the most dynamic artists in the region right now,” says K Contemporary co-owner and director Doug Kacena. “His concepts are incredibly strong and thoughtful, and he’s an absolute master at stretching the physical boundaries of neon.”
Young started testing those frontiers as a student at the Colorado Institute of Art. Drawn to neon’s singular integration of art, science and craft, this is where he first developed his natural aptitude for the craft. His love affair with the medium led him to Los Angeles, where he was soon in high demand for handcrafting pieces for blockbusters such as “Batman Forever.”
Having perfected the practical aspects of his science, Young returned to Colorado and turned his talents toward exploring the mediums artistic potential.
A characteristically thought-provoking neon original titled, “Wish You Were Here” currently shines down from atop Denver’s Museum of Contemporary Art. The piece prompted 5280 Magazine to name him “Top of the Town” Best Artist for 2017. Come November, guests to K Contemporary will quickly see why. Presented as an illuminating oratorio in three parts, “Gas Light Love Bomb” describes the tempo of the human heart as the heady staccato of a new relationship gradually slows to plodding lento and, finally, an unconsciously hostile fermata. Edgy, unblinking and discreetly within subtext, it’s Young at his unapologetic best.
“The story line for the exhibition is a discussion of duality and inner conflict resonating with an underlying theme of redactive realities and narcissism”, Young explains. And if his glowing commentary in that subject seems particularly unequivocal, it’s because he’s been forced to choose his words with exceptional care. “I work differently than most artists because the nature of the medium requires that every piece is fully developed in concept before I begin. There’s not a great deal of artistic freedom once I start bending glass,” he explains.
Young aligns his statements to equally expressive materials from acrylic to lamb’s fur to canvas and metal, and enlists video screens to help detail the familiar stages of poetic entanglement.
“Neon is perfect for expressing the vernacular of emotion and human connection,” Young says. “It has its own life, as intangible as love and heartbreak, and it will evoke ones own feelings in each person who views it.”