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  • Christopher La Fleur

The Momentum Behind 'Inertia': Spring MMXIX

Updated: Jan 16, 2019

INERTIA (n.) | in·​er·​tia | The tendency (of an object) to do nothing or remain unchanged.


Art-making comes from a place deep inside the artist. It is an inexplicable place. Very little makes sense there, but it feels right. It's that feeling the artist is so often compelled to share. Resonance is a basic human desire--we are herd creatures and we seek out commonality with those in our herd.


Inertia was born out of a simple idea: the importance of the moment. Moments matter. They are the substance of our lives; they bring us joy, they create meaning, they tie family and friends together on a single journey if only for a little while. Our indelible memories are the product of these fleeting moments. Our lasting desires are the product of fleeting obsessions.


Beginning with this simple concept, my Spring 2019 collection Inertia was born.

Inertia is a youthful, exuberant study of moments frozen in time. Like insects frozen in amber, the marks and explosive movements of these 10 new works are frozen on the canvas exactly as I created them. It toes the line between abstract and pop art. I have chosen bold, invigorating colors and explosive mark-making techniques to bring this art to life for Spring.


The process of "freezing" paint in motion is not an easy one. The nature of paint is to spread and run when applied thickly. Like most liquids paint seeks an equilibrium. My paint mixture is a completely custom creation. In the process of developing it, I burnt through a dozen canvases and more than 10 gallons of paint.


More crucial than the application of the paint is how this formula dries. Paint is not something which likes being thickly applied. In thick layers, mediums of all kinds (acrylic, oils, house paints, resin, etc...) tend to crack and buckle. This is because the surface of the medium dries quickly, while the substrate stays wet. A wet medium has more moisture than a dry medium, thus when a medium dries, it condenses. The result is a surface which condenses and shrinks atop an expanded substrate causing cracks, crazes (deeply grooved cracks), bubbling, and all sorts of imperfections. Temperature control, moisture control, and application thickness must all be controlled for if these paintings are to dry perfectly "frozen".


Inertia has been compared to some of the works by Jackson Pollock, but this is simply not the case. Jackson Pollock's splatter and drip techniques resulted in richly textured works which were built up over weeks and months. My collection is almost completely textureless, having been created all in a single session, completely wet on wet.


Inertia is presented in three distinct capsules: Youth, Vigor, and Spirit. Each of these concepts are, by their very nature, fleeting. This makes them all the more exciting to suspend in time forever. Each capsule presents a different mark-making technique, while the entire collection retains its integrity being unified by a single theme.


Well-known cultural artifacts bring relevance and timeliness to this collection, while bold color palettes breathe life into spaces which have spent the Winter in slumber. On 23 January Inertia will debut online and on social media. A reception of the work will be held at Revive MD in the Denver Tech Center. The reception will be invitation-only. A date will be announced to social media followers and mailing list subscribers only. Local press are invited to attend this event.


Inertia came from a deeply personal place inside of me, and in less than a week I will be sharing it with you. It is my way of seeking commonality with you. What I hope, more than anything, is that Inertia makes you feel.


Humbly and sincerely yours.

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