Edgar Bryan: Yellow Guitar

3 - 17 March 2021

Philip Martin Gallery is proud to present, "Yellow Guitar," an exhibition of new colored pencil-on-paper works by Edgar Bryan. Taking a page from the Cubist Juan Gris, the drawings in "Yellow Guitar" break the picture plane up mathematically. In these works, Bryan uses intricate line, vibrant color, and a deft sense of pictorial space to pull together a range of themes and motifs.

Although the works in "Yellow Guitar" depict different scenes, ideas and objects, one constant in them is the piano itself - an upright one that sits in the artist's living room - on which and in relation to Bryan organizes visual elements. In his drawings, Edgar Bryan works "a capriccio." In a classical score, a capriccio means to follow one's fancy; in "Yellow Guitar," a capriccio serves as a kind of principle by which to place objects - guitars and musical scores, canvases and fishbowls - with an energy that emphasizes composition and pictorial space. 

Each of the individual works in Bryan's exhibition takes a slightly different route. The drawing "Loose Fruit," presents a selection of pears and bananas that appear as if ready to roll out of the picture frame; in another drawing, "Window," we glimpse a view of the countryside over the top of a musical chart that accordions across the piano keys. Bryan comments, "In this group of drawings I’ve taken the theme of my recent paintings, the piano and the amateur musician - incompetent but inspired; always plowing away at Bach's preludes and fugues. I draw these images in colored pencil, spontaneously, with a Juan Gris book sitting open on my table." 

Bryan's works reference the art historical canon, Cubism in particular, and the fractured, disparate way the artists of early twentieth century Paris depicted the hubbub of life rapidly changing around them. In Cubism, famously, the viewer sees simultaneously with the vantage points of different moments in time and space. Bryan's works use this energy in the creation of image itself - music becomes a metaphor for the studio - his piano a stand-in for the canvas - a place where ideas flit equally across the mind of viewer and artist, highlighting still life as a means by which to enjoy and ask questions about life and to live it.

Edgar Bryan (b. 1970, Birmingham, AL) received his BFA from The Art Institute of Chicago (Chicago, IL) in 1998 and his MFA from the University of California (Los Angeles, CA) in 2001. Recent solo and group exhibitions include "Café Opera," Philip Martin Gallery (Los Angeles, CA); "Via Café," Tif Sigfrid's (Los Angeles, CA); "Edgar Bryan's Paranoid Counterpoint Blues," Grifter (New York, NY); "Household Effects," La Loma Projects (Pasadena, CA); "Welcome to the Dollhouse," Museum of Contemporary Art Pacific Design Center (Los Angeles, CA); "Soft Corners," Richard Telles (Los Angeles, CA); "Paradise," Night Gallery (Los Angeles, CA); "Takashi Murakami’s Superflat Collection," Yokohama Museum of Art (Yokohama, Japan); Venice Beach Biennial (Venice, CA); "the love gang," Regen Projects (Los Angeles, CA); "Drunk vs. Stoned 2," Gavin Brown’s Enterprise (New York, NY); "The Undiscovered Country," Hammer Museum (Los Angeles, CA); "Drunk vs. Stoned," Gavin Brown’s Enterprise (New York, NY); "Hello, My Name Is...," Carnegie Museum of Art (Pittsburgh, PA); "Snapshot," Hammer Museum (Los Angeles, CA). His work is in the collections of Hammer Museum (Los Angeles, CA); Los Angeles County Museum of Art (Los Angeles, CA); Museum of Contemporary Art (Los Angeles, CA); Astrup Fearnley Museet (Oslo, Norway); and Museum der Morderne (Salzburg, Austria). It is held by private collectors like Takashi Murakami, who presented Bryan's work in the context of an exhibition at Yokohama Museum of Art, Yokohama, Japan. Bryan lives and works in Los Angeles, CA.

Edgar Bryan's exhibition is on-line through March 17, 2021. Sky Glabush's exhibition of new oil and sand on canvas paintings, "The Cage Lark," is on view at the gallery through March 19, 2021. 

In accordance with Los Angeles County Covid-19 protocol, Philip Martin Gallery is currently open by appointment only. To make an appointment, or to get additional images, or information please email info@philipmartingallery.com, or call 213-422-9286. Philip Martin Gallery is located at 2712 S. La Cienega Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90034 in the Culver City area of Los Angeles between Venice Blvd. and Washington Blvd., just south of the 10 Freeway.