In his first solo exhibition in over a decade, acclaimed painter John Moyers breathes new life into iconic western themes with his bright, modernist palette and invigorating, design-focused imagery. The show, which opens this month at Maxwell Alexander Gallery in Los Angeles, represents the next chapter in the artist’s ongoing efforts to “push his limits,” says gallery director Beau Alexander. “John is in his mid to late career, but he’s still developing his work; he isn’t creating the same old pieces,” observes Alexander. “He’s one of the best western artists alive, so for him to push the envelope is really exciting.”
Echoes of the Land, as the exhibition is titled, features some of the oil painter’s favorite motifs, including Southwestern landscapes and portraits of American Indians dressed in historically precise, trice-specific garments and headdresses from his own extensive artifact collection. To kick off the show, Moyers is on hand at an afternoon reception on Saturday, June 15, and he isn’t traveling far to attend: The longtime resident of Santa Fe, NM, moved to the Los Angeles area a few years ago. “It adds another artistic stamp to L.A.,” enthuses Alexander. “Many of today’s top western artist live within an hour of the city.’
Moyer’s move to the City of Angels has also enabled the pair to collaborate more closely. In preparation for this show, Alexander visited Moyers’ home near Pasadena. “When I walked into John’s studio and saw his painting of a bucking bronco, it caught me immediately,” says Alexander of the vivid, high-octane scene entitled “Turbulence”. “It almost feels like a William Herbert Dunton painting from the early 1900’s.”
Moyer’s, however, puts a contemporary spin on the classic western subject by portraying the rearing horse and his intrepid rider from a bold, head on view-point, rather than the more traditional side angle. “It creates a 3-D feeling-you feel the motion and the action in the painting,” notes Alexander.
Viewers can expect to see other refreshingly modern, convention-breaking perspectives like this in the show. “I’m having fun,” says Moyers. “I’m experimenting with color and design a lot. As an artist, you always have to try new things.” –Kim Agricola
To view the exhibition, click here.