Show Preview | Damien Gonzales

Albuquerque, NM
Purple Sage Galeria, August 2-31

Damien Gonzales, New Year’s Eve, oil, 12 x 16.

Damien Gonzales, New Year’s Eve, oil, 12 x 16.

This story was featured in the August 2014 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art August 2014 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story!

Landscape painter Damien Gonzales loves nature and art. He believes that, with an open mind, you can find beautiful and interesting things just about anywhere. And he brings his newest paintings inspired by such local and far-flung beauty to Purple Sage Galeria this month in a solo show entitled Landscapes: Near and Far, which opens on Saturday, August 2, with an artist’s reception from 5 to 8 p.m. and runs through the end of the month.

“Damien has the ability to depict a large expanse of landscape on a small panel,” says gallery owner Anita Blythe. “His muted colors are soft and true to the earth-tone colors of the Southwest desert and the Rocky Mountain terrain, always depicting a wonderful sense of atmosphere. His plein-air work is spontaneous and fresh with limited brush strokes that capture that moment in time. His studio works are more refined yet still maintain the essence of place.”

Comprising between 20 and 25 new works, the show is difficult to define in terms of artistic style. “People have told me that the style of my work varies so much that some look as though they were painted by different artists,” Gonzales says. “My approach depends on the conditions at the time and what I am focusing on, so the finished works are highly varied in look and feel.”

Visitors to the show can expect to see both plein-air and studio paintings of the landscapes of New Mexico, as well as a few works from the artist’s travels last year to the Andalucía region of Spain. “Most of these works are attempts to capture large volumes of space,” 
Gonzales says. “Though some are details in the broader landscape, such as a small grouping of sunlit boulders or dwarf oaks overhanging a bend in an arroyo.” The show also presents a variety in painting approaches as well. “Some were painted very rapidly outdoors and border on crude,” he says, “while others are more refined with time spent developing nuances.

“In all of my work,” the artist continues, “I try to convey what it was that caught my eye and the scale and motion that you find when you paint outdoors.” —Laura Rintala

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Featured in the August 2014 issue of Southwest Art magazine–click below to purchase:
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