“Pods” a Puerto Rican artist Gisela Colon exhibition at Ace Gallery, Beverly Hills, CA

Installation View, Ace Gallery Los Angeles

PRART NEWS - The work of Los Angeles-based Gisela Colón has been associated with California Minimalism, specifically the Light & Space and Finish/Fetish movements more broadly referred to as “Perceptualism.” Colón’s sculptures investigate the properties of light in solid form and luminescent color throughthe use of industrial plastic materials. The Glo-Pods body of work, meticulously created through a proprietary fabrication process of blow-molding and layering acrylic, mark Colon as part of the next generation of southern California artists using light as exploratory media.

The light appearing to emanate from the objects is only an illusion based on color and form. Colón's use of amorphous, organic, asymmetrical lines and light-reflecting and radiating media make her objects appear to pulsate with light and energy, simultaneously appearing to both actively materialize and dissolve into the surrounding environment, allowing the experience of pure color and form in space.

Installation ViewAce Gallery Los Angeles

As noted writer and contributing critic to the New York Times, Robert Mahoney has stated:

Though undoubtedly influenced by the Light & Space and Finish/Fetish art of Southern California Minimalists of the 60s and 70s, including artists such as James Turrell, DeWain Valentine, Larry Bell and Helen Pashgian, Colon has reset the terms of the discourse on an organic ground, rooted in concepts of feminism and globalism. While Light & Space as an art movement was contained within the clear boundaries of minimalism, Colon’s objects wend their way through a post-pop, postminimalist cultural landscape that embraces popular-fine art mixing (Colon suggests a memory of her father’s Corvette stays with her in this work), as well as decidedly more fractal boundaries between nature and culture, and one culture and another.
Whereas the Light & Space artists create immaterial and linear exercises in pure perception, Colon’s pods are physical--but of uncertain physicality. The first problem one grapples with, encountering the Glo-Pods, is what they are made of, or how they are made; what, exactly, is one looking at? It is not pure perception, but perception of an unidentifiable object with a strange aura that is the issue: in the Glo-Pods, Colon twists perception inside the embrace of a question mark.

Installation ViewAce Gallery Los Angeles

Colon’s organic objects simply relocate light and space and finish and its fetish in a different place in the universe. By embedding light in color inside a laminated layered form, Colon reverses the usual dynamic of even an optic piece of art. The color and the light come out at you from inside the work, it is emitted, it takes on the glowing character of light (not paint), all of which is pleasingly disorienting to the viewer. Conceptually, when one imagines all the different ways in which postminimal painters a generation ago attempted to break free of the Greenburgian notion of the subordination of color and paint to surface (in his construct of postpainterly abstraction introduced in Los Angeles), painting transmuted by an industrial process was not an option that arose: therefore, Colon has also found a new place in the world for coloration in art that lies somewhere beyond painting. That Colon can pursue this stratagem today indicates the degree to which the issue of color has scaled up to include the wider twists and turns of the built world today.

Installation ViewAce Gallery Los Angeles

Colón was born in 1966 in Vancouver, Canada, to a German mother and Puerto Rican father. She was raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico and attended the University of Puerto Rico, graduating magna cum laude in 1987 with a BA in Economics. Colón moved to Los Angeles to pursue graduate studies, receiving a Juris Doctorate degree from Southwestern University School of Law in 1990. She was given a Congressional Scholarship Award by the Harry S. Truman Foundation in recognition of her outstanding academic excellence. She was able to turn to art full-time in 2002, quickly developing a following for her abstract paintings. Colón’s increasing interest in light and space and issues of visual perception brought her to her present series of work and her conscious association with Light-and-Space and Finish/Fetish artists such as Robert Irwin, James Turrell, Craig Kauffman, DeWain Valentine, Helen Pashgian, Larry Bell, Ronald Davis, Mary Corse, and Peter Alexander. Colón has exhibited at national and international venues. In 2014, she will be featured in the survey exhibition “Trans-Angeles” at the Museum WilhelmMorgner Haus in Soest, Germany.

For further information and visuals please contact Ace Gallery Los Angeles at 323.935.4411 or email acegallery@acegallery.net Gallery Hours: Tuesday through Saturday 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM