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Evan Whale at Tyler Park Presents
September 12, 2020 - November 7, 2020
Tucked into a modest space on Sunset, Tyler Park Presents opened last month with its inaugural exhibition: a solo show by Evan Whale of mixed-media photographs that were all made during the pandemic. The works in the show, titled “In My Room,” were photographed from the quarantined space of the artist’s own bedroom.
There are shots of a neighbor’s roof, an abstract representation of the peacock that regularly strolls the neighborhood, and a large orange tree in the artist’s front yard. These images are then double-exposed or layered with obscuring shadows or metal grates, furthering the vantage point of someone being inside and looking out.
In some, Whale carves the delicate silhouette of decorative security bars onto the photographic surface while developing his prints, a process which flattens his hash marks into decorative gold streaks. The final touch is an application of oil pastel directly onto the surface of the photographs, imbuing each work with bright patterns and colors that belie the banality of their subject matter. These works become fantastical collaged paintings that move beyond photography’s documentary properties.
Perhaps in response to the longing for open spaces and distant travels that many of us have felt as we quarantine in our homes, Whale presents a gateway out — a colorful invented world which ironically was created from the confines of his bedroom.