San Francisco based artist John Waguespack unveils a new chapter in his creative evolution in “Channeling the Dionysian,” a solo exhibition at Rocha Art. In his first solo exhibition in over a year, Waguespack’s work is inspired by Friedrich Nietzsche’s dramatic theory of the “Dionysian”and “Apollonian” modes of the human mind. These modes represent chaos and logical process respectively.
“The work is a result of the initial conflict and ultimate harmonization of the Apollonian and the Dionysian state of being. It is a universal fight within oneself to maintain and relinquish control. Channeling the Dionysian state frees the mind from control and barriers to true creative expression. This elevates the art, the art form, and the artist to a higher plane. In this trance-like state, man and nature are reconciled”, said Waguespack.
In creating his new paintings, Waguespack focused on harmonizing his process with natural forces. Utilizing various signature techniques, he let go of control and allowed the elements to shape the final outcome of the work. From found objects used to provide texture and shape to the dilution of acrylic paint pooling while letting the wind shift the arrangements, there is a tension between control and chaos as organized patterns dissolve into abstraction.
Waguespack’s approach to his work reflects his appreciation for the physicality of his materials, which he ties back to the Dionysian. Working on birch wood panels of varying sizes, some more than seven feet long, he meditated on the physical qualities of the wood and the paint letting the materials guide him intuitively. In doing so, his painting process allows for a degree of entropy that translates towards a better understanding of materials, nature, and creativity.
About John Waguespack: John Waguespack is a leading contemporary artist residing in San Francisco. His artwork has adorned the covers of both the Knob Hill Gazette and 7×7 Magazine. His work has been exhibited at Art Basel Miami with Russell Simmons’ Bombay Sapphire Artisan Series. Born in 1971 in Atlanta, Georgia and holds a BA from Boston College and an MFA in Design and Art Direction from The Portfolio Center.
About Rocha Art: Rocha Art ( formerly Ian Ross Gallery ) is an art gallery and curatorial platform founded by Daniele Rocha, Ian Ross, and Rob Evans in 2015. The inception of Rocha Art comes as partners turn their focus to art as a force of positive social change. Located at 466 Brannan St. in San Francisco, Rocha Art exhibits a diverse roster of contemporary artists, hosts educational panels, and organizes fundraisers for local charities that empower women and youth. Rocha Art founded the sister organization 1 Brush Initiative, a non-profit that sponsors public art projects and invites professional artists to teach art classes to youth at underserved schools and in the juvenile justice system. Visit the gallery Tuesday through Friday, 1-7 p.m. Or by appointment.
Channeling The Dionysian runs through May 15th.