Over thirty of Abstract artist and renegade Deborah Remington’s works will be exhibited at the contemporary Parrasch Heijnen Gallery in Los Angeles, from October 15 to November 26. Opening in January with a foundation grounded in SoCal aesthetics, the Parrasch Heijnen gallery aims to show the influence of historical movements on younger generations through a cross generational investigation amongst artists and ideas over time. For the co-owner of the gallery, Christopher Heijnen, “It’s about tracing those histories and trying to reframe the conversation in new and different ways.”
A tribute to the myriad of styles explored throughout Remington’s lifetime, the exhibition will be the first extensive career survey of the late artist’s idiosyncratic work on paper from 1950 to 2006. Remington’s work fascinated Heijnen long before the artist's gallery days, a fascination deeply embedded in her riveting relationship with Los Angeles—formidable to her development as an artist and where her interests first began. The gallery will showcase two drawings from Remington’s early sketchbooks which illustrate her attempts to capture natural energy within nature, through sketches of the wind and its effect on the landscape and environment around her.
Inspired by the unprecedented nature of jazz music in Los Angeles as a young teen, the visionary artist would stroll down to Central Avenue where she would experiment with drawing abstract images—all while listening to influential jazz musicians of the time such as Charlie Parker and Lester Young. The art and spirit that developed within Remington collated with ideas in improvisational music- both of which are expressed abstractly. Heavily involved in the Bay area’s Beat scene, the venerated artist was one of six painters and poets who founded the now legendary Six Gallery in 1958 where Allen Ginsberg publicly debuted his poem “Howl” for the first time.
One of the most profound female artists of the mid-twentieth century, Remington defied the accepted trends of her time through an emotive unification of light and space demonstrated in the installation. Developing a sensuous style of hard-edge abstraction, the monumental artist’s most emblematic works display the abrupt transitions traversing between intense colors and the formation of imagined worlds. An excavation of the creative unconscious, Remington’s abstract oeuvre is an exploration of the “paradoxes of visual perception, the enigmas and quirks” that shape the basis for our realities. Images of reflectionless mirrors and fractured forms are hallmarks of her work, infused with heightened theatricality and an energetic movement typical of expressionism.
In light of her extensive historical past and experimentation with abstract forms, Remington unquestionably has a lot to offer artists today. The stylistic diversity of the social and political milieu of today provides for a more receptive audience of her work. Exploring the dichotomy between organic and mechanical forms in her drawings, her oeuvre continues to be an ephemeral source of inspiration. The installation at the Parrasch Heijnen Gallery will trace the captivating evolution of her style, from the loose, gestural designs of her earlier works to the mechanistic and didactic rendering of her drawings, both deeply rooted in Surrealism and the Machine age.
The Deborah Remington exhibition will be on view at Parrasch Heijnen Gallery in Los Angeles through November 26.
More about the exhibition here.
Written by Jasmine Ashoori