alexander revier: gentle persuasion: a study of splatter
December 2, 2023 - January 6, 2024
Ro2 Art is excited to present Gentle Persuasion: A Study of Splatter, an exhibition of new work by Dallas-based artist Alexander Revier. The exhibition will open December 2, 2023 and remain on view through January 6, 2024, at Ro2 Art Gallery, located at 2606 Bataan St., Dallas, TX, with an opening reception to be held December 2 from 7-10pm.
Flocks of seagulls populate the beaches of Alexander Revier’s exhibition Gentle Persuasion: A Study of Splatter. Simultaneously vandalizing and decorating their environments, these groups of birds are shown dive-bombing the surreal characters that inhabit Revier’s paintings and portrayed lying sprawled and exhausted on the shore. Industrious and overworked, the birds act as a metaphor to reveal the late-capitalist realities and absurdities of work-life balance.
This latest body of work was inspired by the artist walking through the Grapevine Mills Mall parking lot on his way to work for his Meow Wolf mural. Several of the paintings in the exhibition are near mural scale, depicting large gradients of blue sky, perfect white clouds, and far-reaching horizons. With clear, delicate line work and opaque, saturated colors, Revier stages beachside fights, dolphin acrobatics, and synchronized swimming. At times, his cast of characters are frustrated, bemused, happy, worried, and sincere. Figures fight each other over prostrate seagulls and cower together, holding hands, beneath the birds’ chaotic attacks. In these surreal, cartoonish vignettes, featured throughout Gentle Persuasion: A Study of Splatter, Revier counteracts the ugliness of capitalist excesses with a winsome sense of irony, humor, and optimism.
Bird shit is natures form of vandalism. The birds in my universe live on crap beach, the filthiest place on earth.
I made bird seed that makes birds poop more, I called it Gentle Persuasion. It is meant to be distributed in places where capitalism is ugliest, like mall parking lots. In this way I am painting through the birds, it is nature's vandalism. I think some vandalism is pretty and necessary.
This body of artwork was inspired while I was painting my mural at Meow Wolf spring 2023. Everyday I would walk through the Grapevine Mills Mall parking lot and think about the alternate universe I was creating. In the mural, I depicted birds shitting all over the place.
Some of the birds in my art are going wild and flying around all chaotically, whereas others are dead, possibly from playing and defacing property to the point of exhaustion. This represents my life work balance. I really just want to paint all the time and have no responsibilities, but when I do this my money is depleted! When I have to work too much and have less time to create, I feel frustrated. The painting of two people fighting over the dead birds represents this struggle. There is a lot of internal frustration in this body of work from getting used to working at a larger scale. Ro2 Gallery opened a large new gallery with big walls, and I also got into a new studio where I could work larger. I decided I can no longer be a bedroom artist making tiny little things, although I do see myself going back to desktop sized works when I am fatigued from work. (I do art handling as a hobby.)
I am also revisiting dated information in the same vein of a previous work, Brochure Stand, 2021. This time it is in the form of a phone book, which I thought of in a dream. The pieces are trompe-l’oeil, french for deceive the eye. They are built on panels that are in the shape of a certain perspective, but flat and built expanded off the wall. Sometimes they look way more 3D than they actually are. I really enjoy the craftsmanship of making these odd shaped paintings.
I love overworking a piece of art if I can. Before starting most pieces, I do not fully realize my thoughts and opinions, only the feeling of how I want the work to feel, and the characters and subjects seem to come out subconsciously. I do not plan my paintings and do not paint from any observation or reference.In creating my art, I consistently apply elements of maximalism, humor, every hue, playful hand drawn styles, collage, text, and found images. Executed in an array of mediums including collage, works on paper, mixed media paintings, as well as sculpture and installation.
The art is only fully actualized when it is complete and in front of an audience. It is only until completion when I can make comparisons to past works and see meaning in the subject matter as a linear timeline. I strive for quantity over quality, I want to overwhelm the viewer. I have had several ideas for paintings from dreams and visions such as Brochier Stand, and an unfinished piece, Phone Book. These ideas come from one of my guiding spirits, and I am given direct downloads to these images and meanings.
In creating a new work I hone in on a nonspecific feeling of grandeur, an environment I want to be a part of in every artwork. Although the absorption of past and current world event subject matter does make its way into the work from time to time, there is a filter that only lets an interpreted version of the reality in, making a parody of the truth. I am sometimes surprised by how relevant or darkly prophetic the pieces become.
About the Artist
Under the representation of RO2 Gallery in Dallas since 2017, I have had three exhibitions, and am working towards larger and potentially more immersive experiences. Born in Irving, Texas July 30, 1990, I came of age in the Dallas metroplex area, and received my Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree, New Media Art focus, from the University of North Texas in 2013. Prior, I was accepted twice to The Modern of Fort Worth Museum’s Teen Artist Project, which was crucial for my primary understanding of fine art. Post college, I gained years of commercial art experience from working at Craighead Green Gallery, and as of now, am providing local art handling and installation services, all of which contributed to my growth as an emerging artist.