I’m really excited to announce a new local show Jason and Lorrie Saunders, a Norfolk gallery owner, have put together. The show Jason did there last year with fellow artist Erik Jones was a success and all around good time, so we are hoping lightening strikes twice! Jason invited some of his favorite artists that he has shown with in the past to this group show to share their talent with local art lovers. I feel very honored to be included.
Lorrie Saunders ArtGallery is pleased to present the exhibition, Stuntkid & FRIENDS, guest curated by Jason Levesque, opening July 16 and showing through August 27, 2011.
Award winning artist and illustrator, Jason Levesque (AKA Stuntkid), is back again this summer and this time he is bringing along 6 of his uniquely talented friends for a fantastical display of original paintings, drawings and digital artworks.
As guest curator, Levesque has selected a group of artists he has admired for a long time and whose artwork, like his, is inspired by illustration. According to Levesque, “I’m a huge fan of every one of them and was very excited to have the opportunity to invite these artists to exhibit in my hometown of Norfolk, VA. I consider them my contemporaries, as we all tend to get invites to the same group shows and appeal to a similar audience.”
Among the “Friends,” three reside on the east coast, including Levesque and his wife Elizabeth Levesque of Norfolk and Brooklyn based artist, Allison Sommers. The others, Glenn Arthur, Nomi Chi, Cate Rangel, and Jessica McCourt hail from the West Coast where illustration derived artwork, often referred to as Lowbrow, has developed quite a foothold. Rooted in popular culture, Lowbrow artwork has a sense of humor and is often characterized as fanciful, bizarre, and even strangely grotesque. Once considered an underground art movement, there are now galleries devoted exclusively to exhibiting the genre, and along with the internet, have cultivated quite a following for the artists. Even though Levesque hesitates to categorize all the participants in the “Friends” show as Lowbrow artists, he does concede that all are affiliated with the movement noting that, “the movement, call it Lowbrow or whatever, it doesn’t get a lot of exposure in Virginia. The artists tend to show in cities like Los Angeles, Philadelphia, San Francisco and Seattle.”
According to Levesque, as curator of the “Friends” show, his intent is to introduce to the Hampton Roads community a dynamic group of young, nationally recognized artists whose creative efforts reflect an edgy illustrative style and to deliver a gallery happening rarely experienced in the state of Virginia.