MERCHANT GALLERY is pleased to announce Efflorescence, its first exhibition by Michael Harnish. The show will open February 22nd and remain on view through March 24th 2019.
Based out of the Los Angeles area, Michael Harnish is a key painter in the development of contemporary art making. His work is the product of a pioneering vision with sensitivity to principles of collage, color, and a relationship to art historical lineages. 'Efflorescence' will feature Harnish’s latest body of paintings based on paper collages, which have been crafted over the course of several years. The preliminary images are pulled from fashion magazines and scholastic plant texts books to form unlike relationships. These images demonstrate the convergence of both representation and abstraction by means of experimentation in collage and allow for a broad range of painting traditions. Made using muted pastel tones alongside fluorescent passages, these paintings generate complex and unconventional optical events for the viewers.
After formative years as both an abstract artist and a traditionally trained academic painter, Harnish began in recent years to create pictures in which influences from both could remain in a multicolored and layered composition which aids in allowing him to create an open ended body of work. These paintings are painted in troupe l’oeil fashion to demonstrate the illusion of paper siting on paper . The collage technique results in paintings that demonstrate a wide range of compositional and color variations and recall works by Raushenberg and Dadist collages.