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Roy Dowell

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September 24, 2013 | By Sharon Mizota
The big, basic, almost naive shapes of Roy Dowell's paintings, collages and sculptures at Various Small Fires bring to mind Marsden Hartley or in their more agitated moments, Jean-Michel Basquiat. Like them, the L.A. artist seems to draw from a vocabulary of personal symbols that give his work an idiosyncratic, totemic quality. The paintings and collages achieve a pleasing balance between gestural efforts, letterforms and flat, geometric areas of color or pattern. They get more interesting the more you look at them, like art historical palimpsests that span prehistory to our media-saturated present.
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ENTERTAINMENT
September 24, 2013 | By Sharon Mizota
The big, basic, almost naive shapes of Roy Dowell's paintings, collages and sculptures at Various Small Fires bring to mind Marsden Hartley or in their more agitated moments, Jean-Michel Basquiat. Like them, the L.A. artist seems to draw from a vocabulary of personal symbols that give his work an idiosyncratic, totemic quality. The paintings and collages achieve a pleasing balance between gestural efforts, letterforms and flat, geometric areas of color or pattern. They get more interesting the more you look at them, like art historical palimpsests that span prehistory to our media-saturated present.
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ENTERTAINMENT
October 19, 1997 | Kristine McKenna, Kristine McKenna is a regular contributor to Calendar
Stuart Davis, the great American painter who served as a bridge between Synthetic Cubism and Abstraction, once offered this definition of an artist: "He's a cool Spectator-Reporter at an arena of Hot Events." The Hot Event central to work by L.A. artist Roy Dowell is the whole, cacophonous symphony of Modernism itself.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 31, 2006 | Holly Myers, Special to The Times
Many artists shift toward a sort of minimalism as they mature, their compositions shedding clutter as their confidence in form and technique develops. It says something about the boisterous nature of Roy Dowell's sensibility that his career, outlined in a 24-year survey at Margo Leavin Gallery, has followed more or less the opposite trajectory. Far from detracting from the work, this proves to be exhilarating.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 19, 1991 | CHRISTOPHER KNIGHT, Christopher Knight is a Times art critic. and
"I'm not trying to get out of the question," Roy Dowell said the other day. "I just don't really remember." What the artist could not quite recall was exactly how, as a student at the California Institute of the Arts in the early 1970s, he defended his decision to abandon video as his principal medium in exchange for plain, old-fashioned painting.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 25, 1987 | COLIN GARDNER
Roy Dowell is a notable exception to current trends to artistic cynicism. His abstract paintings tap the inherent optimism of Modernism without resorting to its dated rhetoric. His pluralism is studied and unfettered, drawing upon Western and primitive vocabularies and mutating them into ever fresh, complex hierarchies.
MAGAZINE
September 28, 2003 | Barbara Thornburg, Barbara Thornburg is senior home design editor for the magazine.
Artists Lari Pittman and Roy Dowell had wanted to display their collection of retablos at their Richard Neutra house in La Crescenta. But with so many glass walls, they had little hanging space. So the collection of Mexican religious art, dating from the mid-19th century and collected on trips and at local antique stores and flea markets, was brought to their Atwater Village studio. Five shallow wall-to-wall shelves painted a yellow-ochre divide the space.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 31, 2006 | Holly Myers, Special to The Times
Many artists shift toward a sort of minimalism as they mature, their compositions shedding clutter as their confidence in form and technique develops. It says something about the boisterous nature of Roy Dowell's sensibility that his career, outlined in a 24-year survey at Margo Leavin Gallery, has followed more or less the opposite trajectory. Far from detracting from the work, this proves to be exhilarating.
NEWS
August 30, 2001 | HUNTER DROHOJOWSKA-PHILP, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Lari Pittman and Roy Dowell are not starving artists. They reject the role of poet and painter in "La Boheme," the penniless creative types who suffer alone in a filthy studio. Theirs is more the sensibility of, say, James McNeil Whistler, whose effete personal aesthetic permeated every aspect of his life and art. A highly refined sense of taste is evident in the pair's fine-tuned home, as well as in Pittman's surreal paintings and Dowell's abstractions.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 10, 1996
The J. Paul Getty Trust Fund for the Visual Arts has awarded its annual $15,000 grants to each of five area artists. Painters Roy Dowell, Ben Sakoguchi and Megan Williams are recipients, together with installation artists Daniel J. Martinez and Jennifer Steinkamp.
MAGAZINE
September 28, 2003 | Barbara Thornburg, Barbara Thornburg is senior home design editor for the magazine.
Artists Lari Pittman and Roy Dowell had wanted to display their collection of retablos at their Richard Neutra house in La Crescenta. But with so many glass walls, they had little hanging space. So the collection of Mexican religious art, dating from the mid-19th century and collected on trips and at local antique stores and flea markets, was brought to their Atwater Village studio. Five shallow wall-to-wall shelves painted a yellow-ochre divide the space.
NEWS
August 30, 2001 | HUNTER DROHOJOWSKA-PHILP, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Lari Pittman and Roy Dowell are not starving artists. They reject the role of poet and painter in "La Boheme," the penniless creative types who suffer alone in a filthy studio. Theirs is more the sensibility of, say, James McNeil Whistler, whose effete personal aesthetic permeated every aspect of his life and art. A highly refined sense of taste is evident in the pair's fine-tuned home, as well as in Pittman's surreal paintings and Dowell's abstractions.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 19, 1997 | Kristine McKenna, Kristine McKenna is a regular contributor to Calendar
Stuart Davis, the great American painter who served as a bridge between Synthetic Cubism and Abstraction, once offered this definition of an artist: "He's a cool Spectator-Reporter at an arena of Hot Events." The Hot Event central to work by L.A. artist Roy Dowell is the whole, cacophonous symphony of Modernism itself.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 19, 1991 | CHRISTOPHER KNIGHT, Christopher Knight is a Times art critic. and
"I'm not trying to get out of the question," Roy Dowell said the other day. "I just don't really remember." What the artist could not quite recall was exactly how, as a student at the California Institute of the Arts in the early 1970s, he defended his decision to abandon video as his principal medium in exchange for plain, old-fashioned painting.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 25, 1987 | COLIN GARDNER
Roy Dowell is a notable exception to current trends to artistic cynicism. His abstract paintings tap the inherent optimism of Modernism without resorting to its dated rhetoric. His pluralism is studied and unfettered, drawing upon Western and primitive vocabularies and mutating them into ever fresh, complex hierarchies.
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