Whitney Vosburgh and Philip Donahue

Shrink-wrapped experiences and other forbidden tales.

An exhibition of plastic paintings for plastic times.
September 3 - October 31, 2005
Reception: 4 - 6pm, Saturday, September 10, 2005

The University of California at Berkeley Gallery
2600 Bancroft Way, cross street Bowditch
Berkeley, CA 94704 510/848 6370
Gallery Hours: 9am - 5pm, Monday - Friday; Saturday 10:30 - 12 noon

Berkeley, CA August 18, 2005 ~ The University of California at Berkeley Gallery is proud to announce the opening of "PAINT BEHAVING BADLY: Shrink-wrapped experiences and other forbidden tales", a two-man show of plastic paintings for plastic times by two Bay Area artists: Philip Donahue and Whitney Vosburgh. In this show, they playfully interrogate the idea of plastic as the perfect metaphor for the American Dream and Experience. The show opens on September 3 and runs until October 31, 2005.

Americans live a full life – full of mass manufactured experiences. We do almost anything to avoid looking deep within ourselves, or at what’s really happening around us. We spend precious energy in pursuit of perfection through pre-packaged experiences: plastic experiences are often wrapped in plastic, and are paid for in plastic. Yet, we are never satisfied.

Whitney’s experience on Madison Avenue taught him how America’s mass media and marketing machine promotes certain values, hopes and desires. This machine creates differences between brands where there are none, and desire for products and services that have little lasting value. Philip's experiences on "Holy Hill" taught him the differences between spirituality, religion and theology. The latter two also create differences where there are none for the sake of exploitation.

Philip and Whitney are two abstract painters from two distinctly different places: the monastery and the marketplace. They both grew up in Japan, Europe and U.S.A., giving them an alternative perspective from which to view American society. They eliminate traditional delivery systems, paint brushes and the like, for more immediate effects. Their use of layers of color and intuitive use of line, shape, form and dimensional texture, all combine to provoke questions about predictability, and the subconscious power of colors in all their myriad combinations.

Philip expresses his feelings about our contemporary, plastic society by working in acrylic polymer, synthetic resins, and the computer – the modern media of our times. Meditation and visualization techniques lead to new ideas, feelings, and expressions of our new experimental society. Whitney uses acrylic polymer paint, a petroleum by-product, and plastic packaging, a petroleum and economic by-product, to capture the waning days of the American Empire of Oil through its by-products of mass consumption.

Whitney's and Philip’s two-man show at The University of California at Berkeley Gallery in the heart of Berkeley brings them full circle as Philip studied, taught and painted at Cal, and this is Whitney’s had a solo show at this gallery last year.

Whitney Vosburgh

Whitney is a fourth-generation, Berkeley-based artist who works with pigment, photography, and plastic. His work has been shown in Japan, London, New York, Santa Fe, New Orleans, Los Angeles and San Francisco, and is in public and private collections around the world. Whitney had 22 shows in 2004, including three solo shows: two in Japan, two in New York, two in Chicago, three in Los Angeles, one in Santa Fe, one in Portland, Oregon, one in New Orleans, and nine in the San Francisco Area. He will have four solo shows in Japan and one group show in Japan in the next year. For more information, please visit: www.WhitneyVosburgh.com.

Philip Donahue

Philip has lived, studied and exhibited in Japan, Europe and the USA. Japanese and European art styles inspire him to express meditations in images using the color primaries of both light and paint, articulated in American painting techniques and visual ideas he learned working on Rock Concert Liquid Light Shows in the 1960s. He earned his Ph.D. in Visual Hermeneutics at the Graduate theological Union at UC Berkeley in 1985. For more information, please visit: www.DonahueStudios.com.



Whitney Vosburgh

LIQUID GRAVITY: Ways of Seeing

solo show of paintings, photographs, and light boxes
October 23 - November 20, 2004
Reception on Saturday, October 23 from 6 to 9 p.m.

L2kontemporary Gallery
> post industrial art for the post industrial age <
990 N. Hill Street #205
Los Angeles, CA 90012-1753
Vox: 323.225.1288 Fax: 323.225.1282
Gallery Hours: Thursday to Saturday from 12 to 6 p.m., or by appointment.

L2kontemporary Gallery is excited to announce the opening of "LIQUID GRAVITY: Ways of Seeing", a solo show of paintings, photographs, and light boxes by Whitney Vosburgh. In this show, he playfully interrogates the idea of liquidity as a central metaphor in image making and in life. The show opens on October 23 and runs until November 20, 2004.

In Liquid Gravity, Whitney's central and linking theme is fluidity. A drop here, a drop there, all collecting to form a liquid body of work. He seeks essence by removing details, and focusing on fleeting glimpses of the transient beauty of life and its forgotten moments, particularly in and around nature. He recently returned from an Artist Residency in rural Japan, where he witnessed the forces of nature in all their magnificence – fifty inches of rain in three days, typhoon after typhoon – a floating world.

By tapping into the underground river of life, Whitney finds stories that must be poured into his work. Liquids need containers to give them form. Stories bubble up to the top of his consciousness, striving to be free, and to be revealed as art. Sometimes the results are clear, sometimes murky. Faint echoes from deep down emerge, yearnings, and the stirrings of soul and spirit.

Whitney's work is as colorful as life itself. His canvases flow with liquid polymer, his photographs flow with light, and his light boxes meet half way. In painting he rarely uses brushes or palette knives, and in photography he does not use tripods, flash or sharp f-stops. Abstraction and expressionism are his means of creating inner and outer landscapes that together invite the viewer into his shimmering universe.

Whitney's solo show at L2kontemporary Gallery in the heart of Chinatown brings him full circle as it is his first solo show in Los Angeles in twenty-five years. His work will also be featured in L2kontemporary's following show: "Chroma Nouveau", which will run from November 27 to December 31, 2004.

Whitney Vosburgh

Whitney is a fourth-generation painter who paints with pigment, photography and plastic. His art career began in Los Angeles and has subsequently moved him to London, New York City, and, now, the San Francisco Bay Area. His work has been shown in Japan, London, New York, Santa Fe, New Orleans, Los Angeles and San Francisco, and is in public and private collections in the U.S.A., Europe, Asia and Africa. He graduated with a BFA from Parsons School of Design in New York City; with additional studies at the International Center of Photography in Paris and New York, St. Martin's School of Art in London, and the Art Students League in New York City.

He is the great-grandson of Floris Artnzenius, a member of The Hague School and a contemporary of Vincent van Gogh. On his father side, he is related to Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney. Whitney's most recent solo show was held at the University of California at Berkeley with another one scheduled for next year. He is currently working on a show for New York City called: "Whitney at the Whitney".

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