Natural Force

Gods of fire have made their appearances in cultures throughout history. They have been chosen to represent cut gemstones on repurposed media. The work fits into the Ecocentric Art Movement by bringing materials back to life. A reclaimed printed background disappears behind opaque oil paint rendering and reappears through transparent acrylic wash. Eternal flames re-emerge in the facets of jewels which reflect and transfix.


Ecocentric: Repurposing Media

Harper paints cut gemstones on reclaimed materials. What begins as refuse is repurposed, transforming base materials into noble objects. Diverse mediums such as discarded tablecloths, wallpaper, graphic posters, upholstery fabric, paintings, canvases, commercial art, building and metal scraps are surface medium. By reforming and re-employing, the work fits into the Ecocentric Art Movement through bringing materials back to life. Harper synthesizes historical and contemporary styles by mixing the classical tradition of still-life painting with modernism.


Bio

S. P. Harper studied art at the American University in Paris, France, University of Southern California (BFA) and ArtCenter in Pasadena, California. After spending 12 years in New York, Harper returned to Los Angeles to teach art and concentrate on Ecocentic Art.

Shows

2016

Chaos Theory, Orange County Center for Contemporary Art, Santa Ana

Ground Floor-Chelsea, Amsterdam Whitney Gallery, New York

Big, Little and Open, Santa Barbara Art Guild, Santa Barbara

Night on Broadway Art Share LA Pop-up Gallery, Arts District, Los Angeles

Georgia Galleria, Vallejo, California

Out There, Gallery 825, Los Angeles Artist Association

Beyond the Lines Art Show, Imperial Street, Arts District, Los Angeles

Distinctive Voices, Santa Monica Art Studios, Santa Monica

Benefit Auction, Gallery 825, Los Angeles Artist Association

2015

All Media, Chico Art Center, Chico, California

101 Contemporary Artists, Artvoices Art Books

Still Life, Linus Gallery, Pasadena, California

The Peace Project, The Whole 9 Gallery, Culver City, California

Out There, Gallery 825, Los Angeles Artist Association

ArtSlant Prize Showcase, Los Angeles, California

Benefit Auction, Gallery 825, Los Angeles Artist Association

2014

Small Time, Gallery 825, Los Angeles Artist Association

Eliciting desire. What is it? Who creates it?

 

Harper answers with images of cut gems on recycled materials. What begins as a bit of refuse is repurposed to become something of value, and therefore desirable. Transforming base materials into noble objects, the artist becomes an alchemist, questioning the ontology of art.

 

Focusing on the intersection of rummage rubbish and object d’art, showing how materials change from valuable to worthless and back to valuable again, the work explores layers and levels of reality. The surface first layer is a discarded scrap, formerly a door, made from wood, which originates from a tree. A photograph from a jewelry catalogue taken of a precious stone instigates the gem painting. Thus, the object circle of life is complete.

 

Desire is predicated on making choices. Choice is made by identification and understanding. The paintings combine two colors to represent a place, time or memory. As sounds and smells take the listener back to a place and time, so too does color. Color theory creates style and personality, shapes selection and ultimately brings desire.

 

Several layers are revealed in each depiction. An existing printed background partially disappears behind an acrylic wash as well as disappearing all together behind opaque oil paint rendering. Background recycled patterns appear and disappear through the transparent and reflective facets in the jewels. Harper synthesizes historical and contemporary styles, taking the classical traditions of still-life painting and filtering them through the lens of modernist practice.

 

Diverse mediums such as wall lath and plaster rubble, door composite fragments, tablecloths, graphic posters, upholstery fabric, discarded canvases, commercial art and metal scraps are surface materials improved by alteration. By reforming and re-employing, the work fits into the Ecocentric Art Movement to reduce, reuse and recycle. Indeed, every piece recasts formerly worthless material and brings it back to life.

Natural Force

Gods of fire have made their appearances in cultures throughout history. They have been chosen to represent gemstones on repurposed media. The work fits into the Ecocentric Art Movement by bringing materials back to life. A reclaimed printed background disappears behind opaque oil paint rendering and reappears through transparent acrylic wash. Eternal flames re-emerge in the facets of jewels which reflect and transfix.


Ecocentric: Repurposing Media

Harper paints gemstones on reclaimed materials. What begins as refuse is repurposed, transforming base materials into noble objects. Diverse mediums such as discarded tablecloth, wallpaper, curtains, graphic posters, upholstery fabric, painting, canvas, commercial art, building and metal scrap are surface media. By reforming and re-employing, the work fits into the Ecocentric Art Movement to reduce, reuse and recycle. Harper synthesizes historical and contemporary styles by mixing the classical tradition of still-life painting with modernism.


Bio

S. P. Harper studied art at the American University in Paris, France with Paul Jenkins, USC Roski School of Fine Arts (BFA) and ArtCenter in Pasadena, California. After spending 12 years in New York, Harper returned to Los Angeles to teach art and concentrate on Ecocentic Art. Harper’s grandfather, Archibald Picking, was a diamantaire (diamond cutter) before becoming a conductor for Pacific Electric Red Cars.

  

  
Exhibitions

2018

Odyssey II, TAM: Torrence Art Museum, Torrence, California

Silence Breakers, Ely Center of Contemporary Art, New Haven, Connecticut

Imagine: A Visual Arts Exhibit, Platt and Borstein Gallery, AJU, Bel-Air, California

L.A. Art Show, bG Gallery, Los Angeles, California

Personal Vacation, Gallery 825, LAAA, juried by Chris Davies

L.A. Fashion Week/Art Hearts Fashion, Six Summit Gallery, Ivoryton, Connecticut

Round, bG Gallery, Santa Monica, California

The C Note Show, ShockBoxx Projects Gallery, Hermosa Beach, California

Off the Wall, Shoebox Projects, Los Angeles, California

2017

MOAH: Cedar Cedarfest, Museum of Art & History, Lancaster, California

Gods of Fire, Living Room Gallery, W Hotel Hollywood, Hollywood

Summer Exhibition / Endless Summer, AC Gallery, Hollywood, California

It Takes A Village, CA / 101, Redondo Beach, California

Ed Moses, We Are Coming For You, ShockBoxx Projects Gallery, Hermosa Beach, California

Semi-Precious, Art Share L.A. Gallery, Arts District, Los Angeles

Abstract ll, Beyond the Lines Gallery, Bergamot Station, Santa Monica

Imagine: A Visual Arts Exhibit, Platt and Borstein Gallery, Los Angeles

Gods of Fire, Art Share L.A., Groundwork Coffee Company, Hollywood

Contemporary Art / ipsō ˈfaktō, Industrial Gallery of Art, North Hollywood

What Does DTLA Mean To You?, Angels City Brewery, Arts District, Los Angeles

Out There, Gallery 825, Los Angeles Artist Association, juried by William Escalera & Francisco George

Fabrik Magazine, L.A. Art Show 2017, Los Angeles

stArt Up Art Fair LA, Highland Gardens Hotel, Los Angeles

EXPO Contemporary, The Reef, Arts District, Los Angeles

CASA of Los Angeles Charity Art Show, Arts District, Los Angeles

HoldYou Foundation Charity Art Auction, Los Angeles, California

Benefit Auction, Gallery 825, Los Angeles Art Association

2016

Chaos Theory, Orange County Center for Contemporary Art, Santa Ana

Ground Floor-Chelsea, Amsterdam Whitney Gallery, NY, curated by Ruthie Tucker

Big, Little and Open, Santa Barbara Art Guild, juried by Rafael Perea de la Cabada

On an Odd Night, TAG Gallery Bergamot Station, Santa Monica

Perimeter Gallery Show, Art Share L.A., Arts District, Los Angeles

Night on Broadway Art Share LA Pop-up Gallery, Arts District, Los Angeles

Georgia Galleria, Vallejo, California, curated by Daisy Villanueva

Out There, Gallery 825, Los Angeles Artist Association, juried by William Escalera & Francisco George

Open Art Exhibition, Light, Space & Time Online Art Gallery, curated by John R. Math

Beyond the Lines Art Show, Arts District, Los Angeles, curated by Brittany Davis

Distinctive Voices, Santa Monica Art Studios, Santa Monica

OneArt: Artists for a Cure, Arena 1 Gallery, Santa Monica

Benefit Auction, Gallery 825, Los Angeles Artist Association

2015

All Media, Chico Art Center, Chico, California, curated by Klint Kettell

Still Life, Linus Gallery, Pasadena, California

The Peace Project, The Whole 9 Gallery, Culver City, California

Out There, Gallery 825, Los Angeles Artist Association, juried by William Escalera & Francisco George

Benefit Auction, Gallery 825, Los Angeles Artist Association

2014

Small Time, Gallery 825, Los Angeles Artist Association, juried by Cris McCall

Out There, Gallery 825, Los Angeles Artist Association, juried by William Escalera & Francisco George

Benefit Auction, Gallery 825, Los Angeles Artist Association

   

  

Experience

2015-present Art Professor, American Jewish University, Los Angeles

2015-present Art Lecturer, LA Guest Artist Series, David Valentine

2015-present Art Professor, Alexander Hamilton & Los Angeles High School

2011-present Art Professor, Belmont Retirement Community, Los Angeles

2001-2009 Assistant Art Professor, Roscomare Road School, Los Angeles

   

  

Awards

101 Contemporary Artists, Artvoices Art Books, edited by Terrence Sanders

Artavita Certificate of Excellence, Despina Tunberg, Santa Barbara, California

ArtSlant Prize Showcase, Los Angeles, California

Artvoices Magazine 10th Anniversary Gallery Guide featured artist

Los Angeles Art Association Featured Artist, Gallery 825, Los Angeles, California

Special Recognition Category, Light, Space & Time Online Art Gallery, John R. Math

  

   

In the collections of Mandy and Cliff Einstein, Glorya Kaufman, TAM: Torrance Art Museum, South Bay Contemporary Gallery, Sharon Lane and Dr. Arpee F. Yeretzian
  

 

 
Eliciting desire. What is it? Who creates it?

 

Harper answers with images of gemstones on recycled materials. What begins as a bit of refuse is repurposed to become something of value, and therefore desirable. Transforming base materials into noble objects, the artist becomes an alchemist, questioning the ontology of art.

 

Focusing on the intersection of rummage rubbish and object d’art, showing how materials change from valuable to worthless and back to valuable again, the work explores layers and levels of reality. The surface first layer is a discarded scrap, formerly a door, made from wood, which originates from a tree. A photograph from a jewelry catalogue taken of a precious stone instigates the gem painting. Thus, the object circle of life is complete.

 

Desire is predicated on making choices. Choice is made by identification and understanding. The paintings combine two colors to represent a place, time or memory. As sounds and smells take the listener back to a place and time, so too does color. Color theory creates style and personality, shapes selection and ultimately brings desire.

 

Several layers are revealed in each depiction. An existing printed background partially disappears behind an acrylic wash as well as disappearing all together behind opaque oil paint rendering. Background recycled patterns appear and disappear through the transparent and reflective facets in the jewels. Harper synthesizes historical and contemporary styles, taking the classical traditions of still-life painting and filtering them through the lens of modernist practice.

 

Diverse mediums such as wall lath and plaster rubble, door composite fragments, tablecloths, graphic posters, upholstery fabric, discarded canvases, commercial art and metal scraps are surface materials improved by alteration. By reforming and re-employing, the work fits into the Ecocentric Art Movement to reduce, reuse and upcycle. Indeed, every piece recasts formerly worthless material and brings it back to life.