Lawrence LaBianca & Wolfgang Bloch: Tracking Nature -

Main Gallery

Lawrence LaBianca & Wolfgang Bloch: Tracking Nature

June 11 - July 31, 2011

Curated by Dieter Tremp

The artistic mind’s creative response to observing nature has been the fascinating focus of art from the caves of Lascaux to the art studios of the present. California artists Lawrence LaBianca and Wolfgang Bloch use material, format and imagery in particularly successful ways to evoke and track subtle movements in nature. San Francisco Sculptor LaBianca introduces time’s traces into his meticulously crafted collage works in the form of patinas, altered forms and inscribed recordings, some documented by videography. Southern Californian painter Wolfgang Bloch matches his delicate imagery of roiling ocean surf with materials representing the unstoppable progress of time, from rusted metal signs to aged floor boards brought back to a high polish. As different and varied as these two artists’ respective works are, their striking cross-overs and complementary approaches provide the Museum visitor with the rich and sensual experience of nature’s eternally moving narrative.

If you read anything about Bloch, you will learn three things; he is from Ecuador, he surfs and that his lifelong love of the ocean deeply influences his work….communicating both the primal power and the hypnotic beauty of the sea.

– T.S. McClellan 

Wolfgang Bloch uses a subdued palette,modest and unexpected materials; all utilized to reduce traditional seascapes to their essence and in the process imbue them with compelling intensity. His work is exhibited internationally in galleries, museums and seen in major publications. His book, Wolfgang Bloch: The Colors of Coincidence,(Chronicle Books) touches on his richly layered life.  Raised in Ecuador, Bloch graduated from University of Florida and the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena California. He had a successful career as art director and illustrator for major companies, before he returned to painting.

Many of LaBianca’s sculptures seem charged, whether through a tension of direction (arriving/departing, rising/falling etc.) an air of humor that enlivens their forms; a complexity of materieals; or an actual physical tension….

– Emily Raabe 

Lawrence LaBianca uses metal, ceramic, wood, glass and exceptional craftsmanship to create elegant objects and tool forms, both abstract and narrative, to explore our relationship to nature. LaBianca creates elaborate constructs to allow him to co-create art with nature, such as a small boat, a copper form and stones or steel balls riding a roiling river in Colorado make etching plates  used to make prints. New York born LaBianca lives in San Francisco. He holds and MFA from the California College of Arts and Crafts, where he is a lecturer on interior design architecture. His work is exhibited in galleries and museums throughout the West Coast. He also collaborates with artists who work in a variety of disciplines.