Impressed by the California gentle and panorama, Moroccan textiles and Tibetan monks’ mandalas, LA-based artist Jennifer Guidi mixes sand with paint to create atmospheric, summary compositions that radiate outward to encourage a meditative state of being in viewers.

“I’m exploring colour, texture, and type, and this concept of power making a vibration, that, if you find yourself in entrance of the work, is one thing you may really feel,” she tells Artspace. 

Town of Los Angeles, the place Guidi relocated after receiving her MFA from the College of the Artwork
Institute of Chicago in 1998, has profoundly influenced these radiant work, energized
by town’s gentle, pulsating urbanity and putting pure options, and created in her studio underneath the sustaining beats of up to date hip-hop.

The fast-rising Redondo Seaside artist’s work attracts from a number of lineages: the visionary Modernism of the American Southwest; process-oriented minimalism, Mild and Area, and lyrical West Coast abstraction. 

Deceptively complicated and exquisite, Jennifer Guidi’s layered portray observe stems from and offers solution to a transcendent statement of each exterior and inside worlds. A number of main establishments have acquired her work, together with the Hammer Museum, the Dallas Artwork Museum and the San Francisco Museum of Fashionable Artwork; and she or he was additionally featured in Phaidon’s celebrated survey Nice Girls Painters

Guidi’s  work can be within the everlasting collections of the Los Angeles County Museum of Artwork, and Guggenheim Museum, New York. She’s represented by GagosianDavid Kordansky and MASSIMODECARLO.

As she works in the direction of a brand new solo exhibition, And so it’s., from September 16, 2023 by means of  January 6, 2024, on the Orange County Museum of Artwork in Costa Mesa, California, we caught up with this fast-rising artwork star to seek out out extra about her work which she tells us is, “an introspective psychological journey which pertains to my meditation observe.” 

An Countless Reflection of Your Stunning Vitality (White #2PT, Black Sand SF #2E, Multicolor, Black Floor), 2020 photograph by Brica Wilcox

Do you intention to evoke a sure emotion in individuals by means of your work? I believe there’s a religious ingredient to it. I don’t know if everybody connects in that method. The commonest factor I hear from individuals is that they really feel a sure calmness, or pleasure, and that’s what I’m attempting to evoke.

Do the work serve that goal for you, as nicely? I do prefer it when a bit is completed. I like having the sensation that all the things is in its proper place–so there’s a calmness with that. There may be additionally a way of affection after I end one thing. I do know it’s the place I wanted to be. It undoubtedly does evoke emotion on a deep stage for me.  

Do you discover the act of portray itself meditative? Positively. After I’m portray, and in that zone, I’m very a lot in it and don’t need to be pulled out of it. And that’s an important feeling to have the ability to hook up with a bit in that method. Generally it takes some time to attach, and I’ve to type of virtually battle to get into a unique psychological place after which I believe it’s type of like a wave. As soon as I really feel that connection, I get sucked into it and I am proper in it.

So it actually is dependent upon the place I’m within the portray whether it is a right away connection or whether or not it’s type of like figuring out. Generally it takes a short time to be ok with the place you might be after which the endorphins hit and also you’re like yeah, I’m doing this! 

I hearken to quite a lot of hip-hop within the studio. I actually join with the general beat of it. It’s type of upbeat and retains me going. But in addition lyrically, once you’re type of battling or preventing to get to someplace. I really feel like I’m on the identical power stage, the identical wavelength. It undoubtedly helps me; it feeds me and helps my creativity by connecting with that musical creativity as nicely.


Jennifer Guidi photographed by Brica Wilcox 

What do individuals say to you about your work? I believe when individuals reply to the work or come to my studio, they are saying that they really feel a way of calm. I really feel their studying is extra than simply seeing one thing on the wall. I really feel like they’re studying one thing that’s within the work, as a result of I’m consciously placing it there. And that’s nice. I really feel like that’s the aim of each artist–to type of know that what you’re placing into one thing could be learn by a viewer, or that it may be felt. 

Do individuals use the work to meditate? Some individuals inform me that they meditate in entrance of the work. I believe there’s an unfolding that occurs if somebody’s really dwelling with the work. There may be an general enjoyment of how gentle can change all through the day and reveal these layers within the work. So you may proceed to learn sure issues, or discover issues, that you simply hadn’t seen earlier than. 

That’s the thrilling factor about dwelling with artwork. I’ve quite a lot of artwork round me in my home and possibly I won’t give attention to it each day, however one thing can simply catch my eye and I’m again in it, appreciating that piece once more.

Do you might have completely different relationships with the completely different sorts of work you make? I work on work that reference mountains, and others which are extra simply explosions of colour and power. My relationship with the mountain work could be extra of a battle as a result of I don’t know the place they’re going to go, so it’s a really completely different journey. 

And in addition, curiously, within the sense of them being extra landscape-based, there’s this journey into the mountain and there can really be religious references inside that. So possibly my relationship with these, in a method, is usually a little completely different to 1 that’s simply exploring colour and pleasure.

Reflections of a Rainbow (Painted White, Painted White Sand, Rainbow Gradient, White Floor), 2022 photograph by Brica Wilcox

The phrase ‘spirituality’ comes up quite a bit when speaking about your work. Have you ever ever skilled one thing you may’t rationally clarify? It’s attention-grabbing, I don’t know if … let’s see…. I don’t know that I’ve had a selected expertise. For me it’s only a journey, and being linked, and consciousness. I identical to seeking out issues that maintain me in that mindset. It’s actually in regards to the thought of being linked to this earth, and to the universe, and to others, but in addition simply having a self-awareness.

That does encourage my work as a result of I can generally simply see a flower, or a chicken, or these lovely colours and I need to translate that into work. Meditation is identical, as a result of if I’m sitting there for fifteen minutes these issues are gonna pop into my thoughts. Generally it’s’ very literal: I ought to end this X, Y and Z. After which I’m going to the studio, and I do it.  

Portray is a observe, meditation is a observe; something we do every day that possibly doesn’t really feel like we need to do–that’s what stretches us. And I believe that’s what stretches the work as nicely. 

Did you at all times take into account artwork on this method, or did that framing mechanism come to you later in life? I believe artwork was at all times a method that I might get into a unique house. I believe that’s what actually linked me to creating artwork. Whilst a child I might actually get into it, and I might hyperfocus. I used to be at all times stitching and making crafts and drawing in highschool.

I’m undoubtedly ADD and there have been a lot of issues that I might procrastinate over. Sitting and making one thing was a time after I might actually become involved, and that at all times felt good. I really feel prefer it was at all times there. However I don’t assume I might actually join the dots till I began meditating–which was possibly like ten years in the past–and that was a really gradual course of.

Round 2013 you started to introduce sand into your work, what impressed that? I used to be at all times enthusiastic about works with sand in them. It was simply one thing that at all times caught my eye, whether or not it was Picasso or Berni; older work the place there was a sand ingredient. 

So it at all times caught my eye after which I began mixing it. At first, I began mixing it in oil paint after I was nonetheless portray extra representational work. I used to be mixing it within the paint and portray it on the bottom simply so as to add a sure texture to it. And I used to be utilizing it as a method so as to add extra oil paint whereas I used to be portray an object, as a result of I felt prefer it might free me not directly.  

I moved into abstraction round 2012; I had gone to Morocco and shortly after I went to Hawaii and simply being in locations the place I used to be surrounded by nature, and surrounded by sand, I simply saved fascinated with how I might put this into my work. 

Set up at Villa Croce, Genoa, Italy, 2017 photograph by Roberto Marossi

Was it the materiality or the timeless nature of sand that appealed to you? I couldn’t actually put my finger on it however then, after I was creating my first summary work, I used to be portray small dots of oil paint and when the sand began coming in, I actually favored this ingredient of all of those little items, little specks and dots coming collectively to make a complete. However I believe there’s a timelessness in taking one thing that often strikes, and modifications, and fixing that, and making it timeless. I wasn’t possibly aware on the time, however I believe that ended up taking part in into it.

You have got a brand new present of labor And so it’s., from September 15, 2023 by means of  January 6, 2024, on the Orange County Museum of Artwork in Costa Mesa, California; what’s it like once you see your work exit the door, presumably for the final time? There’s a disappointment, particularly if it’s a giant physique of labor going out to a present, and I do know that it’s not going to be within the studio anymore. There’s a letting go, however I believe that that letting go allows a lot extra to occur. It helps proceed the inventive course of. 

Look out for a really particular restricted version Jennifer Guidi print, created in collaboration with Artspace, which we will probably be launching subsequent week.  

Rhythms of Nature (Painted Universe Mandala, Rainbow Gradient, Pink Floor), 2021-2022,  photograph by Brica Wilcox

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