Monday, 21 October 2013

Grace Slick – An American Treasure

File:GraceSlick2008.jpgGallery 319 in Woodland Hills is playing host to an exhibition by one of the art world’s established stars who is also a music icon for the ages. Grace Slick. In case you missed the previous century, Grace was a leading creative force in the visionary 60’s band, Jefferson Airplane. Slick penned the hits, including “White Rabbit”; one of the penultimate lyrical and musical achievements in Rock Music history. Slick was one of the era’s most photogenic free-radicals, and could always be counted on for a brutally honest and provocative quote.  At the turn of the decade, when the “…Airplane” flight crew started parachuting from the vessel, Slick and the remaining members retooled the craft, re-christened it Jefferson Starship and maintained altitude with a clutch of hit singles and albums throughout the 70’s and 80’s.
Always a leader and never a follower, Grace famously declared her distaste for middle age rockers shaking their booty on the concert stage and retired from music in 1989. She fell into painting a couple of years later and never looked back…..
Grace Slick is not a coy artist. She doesn’t obfuscate her message in a maelstrom of abstract tom-foolery. Her lines and subjects are clean and carefully composed. She has expressed admiration for the 17th century painter Vermeer and his use of light. Many of the same themes and subjects she chronicled with her music, she has memorialized in acrylic. The world of Lewis Carroll is one Grace feels existentially connected to.  And artistically, she revisits that world quite often. She also resurrects the spirits of absent friends from the golden era of the 1960’s. Slick’s portraits of her friend Jim Morrison are particularly haunting.  


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