pt. 2: LA is pleased to present A Garden or A Grave, an exhibition of new works by Brett Flanigan and Ellen Rutt. A Garden or A Grave, the exhibition's title, posits a framework in which to question the future of our planet in the era of ecological collapse and climate change.
A grave, a place for decomposition, with time becomes a garden. For this exhibition, both artists focus on the idea of place and how experiences in the outside world are translated through color, form and texture. Each artist has created a type of landscape painting that is non-representational, abstracting their experiences in and with nature. Brett Flanigan approaches the work in this series by reflecting on a specific place or experience, and responding to this meditation by laying down a framework of color and composition that portrays the feeling of each. Utilizing this substructure, he continues his exploration of systems through pattern, probability, logic or repetition.
These systems are a way for the artist to navigate a series of informed decisions that result in unpredictable outcomes. This process had led to a broad spectrum of work in varying materials, techniques and styles. Ellen Rutt’s work surrenders to the possibilities and limitations of place in a tender call and response between control and improvisation. Through an abstract lexicon of layered shapes and primary colors, she facilitates conversations between materiality and movement, between place and process. Her site-specific installations, mixed-media paintings, and textiles examine notions of belonging and exclusion in the perceived nature-culture divide in America.