Lingering in the Hazy Glow of Jason Clay Lewis’ work on view in “Afterburner” at Techne Art Center

When Brancusi and the Futurists exhibited their work for the first time, critics were shocked. Here was art that was raw, forming direct dialogue with emerging technology – automobiles, trains and even early airplanes – that were built on power and speed. “Afterburner” – on view until July 20th at Techne Art Center in San Diego, CA – draws from this same wellspring of unbridled speed, power and genius. The exhibit is curated by Chuck Thomas and features works by Lewis, Jon Elliott, Jack Henry, Robin Kang, Dave Kinsey, John Oliver Lewis, Mônica Lóss, Jessica McCambly, Tim Murdoch, Sasha Koozel Reibstein and Allison Renshaw.

Techne Art Center embraces the dynamic work presented in this exhibition. “The exhibition examines the intellectual, philosophical, and scientific explorations that blur the boundaries between painting, installation, and sculpture,” the Art Center notes. “The primary focus of the show is the definition of art and the nature of these boundaries. In essence, the show advocates for an inclusive perspective that expands the limits of art, highlighting its boldest expressive virtues.” Spanning sculpture, painting, mixed media and installation work, “Afterburner” sends shock waves through more traditional, medium-specific exhibition leanings. While the artworks on view seem to have tenuous links to one another, by leaning into the streak of genius that coalesces a final and potent artwork, coaxing it out from the mind of the artist and manifesting it within the artist’s studio, one can see the shared genesis of the seeds that form each unique work assembled into this generative art exhibition garden.

Artists’ processes embrace non-traditional expressions of form and texture, both surface texture and visual, multi-dimensional texture as well. Abstract sculptures that spill and tumble over one another on a set of raised platforms in the installation seem to afford the viewer a view into an exotic lexicon – a vibrant and bold set of curvilinear forms that seem to form an abstract sentence separated into unique, multi-dimensional fragments. The color gradients in these sculptures are simultaneously futuristic and natural, organic hues captured equally in cosmic, outer space configurations and in terrestial crystals.

Fabric and textile art by Mônica Lóss seemingly depicts abstracted, organic forms in bold complementary colors. Approximating a natural spiral cocoon, the combination of this wall-mount artwork with the pedestal-mounted sculpture hints at a plush, vibrant world that is carefully composed to inhabit both the artist’s imagination and speak to forms and materiality found in the natural world.

A suite of three artworks (above from left to right: “Libertas Xi Aquilae A” (2023) “Formosa HD 100655 Leo” (2023) and “Homam Zeta Pegasi A” (2023)) by Jason Clay Lewis, exudes the transcendental in painterly compositions and the gradients present in the artworks themselves. Gently alternating hues and tones in radiating rays span outward from a round and effusive center, alluding to otherworldly portals or, perhaps, visions. The gentle oscillation of each ray – bounded by a thin white line on either side – allows the eye to hover, gently and unimpeded, moving across the picture plane to take in the harmonious whole.

– Audra Lambert

“Afterburner” remains on view at Techne Art Center at 1609 Ord Way, Oceanside, CA 92056 in San Diego, CA, through July 20th, with more information available on their website:

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