November 26, 2021 – January 12, 2022
The Roll Up Project is pleased to present paintings by Michael S. Moore. For over six decades, Moore has painted expansive landscapes based on his travels through California, Colorado, and Nevada. His paintings sometime depict existing landscapes, but many are reflections of the scenes he has internalized.
Violet Cloud (2021) is installed in the Third Street windows. It depicts a mesa in the distance, with an immense violet-tinged cloud hanging above it. In our rain-starved state, it’s a welcome sight, practically a mirage. It conjures the smell of wet dirt and rocks, the thundering power of the deluge, and the quiet calm after the cloud has passed. This timeless landscape could represent a place from 1,000 years ago, today, or some time in the distant future. Moore’s careful attention to color and composition transforms narrow bands of color into a moody and immersive scene.
The two paintings filling the Harrison Street window, Overpaint 1979 (1979) and Overpaint 5 (1979), highlight a different moment in the artist’s oeuvre. In the late 1970s, Moore took inspiration from comic book illustrations, especially the Adventures of Tintin, which he read to his son. The Overpaint paintings are energetic and slightly disorienting, in part because the crisp comic-style linework implies a representational scene. It is as if we are in the middle of a crash-boom-bang moment in a comic strip, and we are challenged to find the ground, the walls, or anything recognizable. Within this active environment, there are abstract lines, curves, and fragments to follow, all filled in with bright yellows and pinks tempered with soft blues, tan, gray, and greens. This series may be interpreted as an inner landscape, or an interpretation of complex emotions. It pulls together aspects of formal abstraction, action painting, and stylized illustration.
Moore’s compositions remind us of the powerful role artists play in reflecting the world around us. In the midst of another stomach-churning phase of the COVID-19 pandemic, these paintings offer viewers a moment of pure imagination, a space to look, smell, listen, and consider.
About the Artist
Michael S. Moore is a painter whose work reflects on scenes of the Western United States. His travels through California, Colorado, and Nevada inform the abstracted landscapes he creates, many of which are created from memories. Moore earned a BFA at Stanford and attended graduate courses at Yale. His work has been exhibited at Stanford University Art Gallery, Stanford, CA; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco; Refusalon, San Francisco, CA; Krannert Art Museum, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Champaign, IL; and the de Young Museum, San Francisco, among others. He lives and works in Benicia, CA, as well as Gardner, CO and Wall Spring, NV.
Moore’s solo exhibition at the Nevada Museum of Art is on view from December 11, 2021 to July 10, 2022.
Learn more about his work at mikesmooreptgs.com.