In the midst of this fine spring, one Long Beach-based painter has devoted his time and energy to the fantastic flora of the season by embracing the colors, the shapes and the decay associated with such fleeting and temporal beauty. From a few houseplants of his own and a sampling of a local florist’s arrangement services, Hely Omar Gonzalez, explored through painting his leafy models petal by petal, stem by stem.
“For this show I wanted to try and capture the fleeting moment I had with each arrangement while expressing my own interpretation of the subject matter,” Gonzalez said.
The opening reception for La Primavera, to be held at The New Americans Gallery on May 2 as part of Private Party Four, will feature live music by the local band, Pine Family, and light fare catered by local Danish baker, Breadren x BrØdre Custom Baking. Petals & Pop Shop, a Seal Beach florist, which provided Gonzalez with several floral arrangements for his paintings, will display their own flora-based artful contributions to the gathering.
“As far back as I can remember I have been in love with flowers and nature,” Gonzalez pondered. “Everything about them is worth celebrating. From their color and form to their scent and texture, there isn't a single thing that is not fascinating to me. However, once I started this project, it was the often small amount of time I had with the blooms that I grew to appreciate most.”
Gonzalez made 30 paintings in oil, each as an exploration in application and color. The artist explained that he took many “artistic liberties” in his interpretation of the plants. Eventually, he began to see each piece as a topographical map of “brightly colored blobs.”
“The idea of these paintings looking like they are made of paint and not illusions of reality really excited me. I believe these paintings translate this feeling to the viewer, or at least I would like them to!”
He invites the public to kick back at the party, to take a moment to view the captured blooms and perhaps renew a dormant appreciation for some of nature’s most vibrant gifts.
The New Americans Gallery is located at 1330 Gladys Ave. Private Party Four begins at 4:00PM and will end at 7:00PM.