With its mesmeric, meditative surface, Untitled (Red Sand SF #1E, Yellow Ground)
swells and pulsates with an aura of rippling waters, billowing winds and crimson skies. Part of Jennifer Guidi’s latest series of large-scale, sand and acrylic paintings rendered in the seven colours of the light spectrum, the present work resounds with the natural beauty of the artist’s native California, as well as the desert sands of Morocco; a country in which the artist had an aesthetically transformative experience in 2012. Evoking by turns the hypnotic Op art of Bridget Riley, Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Nets
, and the kinetic vortices of Günther Uecker, Untitled (Red Sand SF #1E, Yellow Ground)
is most pointedly an exquisite extension of the experiments of the Light and Space artists of 1960s Southern California. Lining the frescoed walls of a neoclassical Italian villa, the series to which the present work belongs enjoyed its initial display at Guidi’s first solo museum exhibition, which took place at the Museo d’Arte Contemporanea Villa Croce in Genoa in 2017. Comparable examples of Guidi’s highly sought after work presently reside in the collections of the Hammer Museum, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Rubell Family Collection and the Marciano Art Foundation.
Fascinated by the intricate stitching hidden on the reverse sides of Moroccan rugs, Guidi began to paint from photographs of such woven surfaces in 2012; producing the Field Paintings that were first exhibited at LAXART in 2014. The sand and acrylic works are a fine extension of these original pieces. Using a sharpened, bespoke wooden dowel, Guidi makes hundreds of patterns across a pre-prepared underpainting onto which she applies dense layers of pigment infused sand. Marrying the serene systematicity of her West Coast Minimal forebears with a full-bodied chromatic palette, Untitled (Red Sand SF #1E, Yellow Ground) indulges the viewer in a heightened sensorial experience.