Forgotten Faces: Portraits without Pedigree
Selections from the Roger Handy Collection
Track 16 Gallery presents Forgotten Faces: Portraits without Pedigree or Your Picture Here: Pictures from Purgatory, Selections from the Roger Handy Collection, curated by Jeffrey Vallance. The exhibition runs from October 26 through November 18, 2006, with an opening reception on Saturday, November 4, 2006 from 6 to 9 PM.
Personal portraiture traditionally has been the province of the privileged and the powerful: of princes, popes and politicians. To be sure, the majority of formal portraits adorning the world’s great museums consist of representations of social elites. Sharing these functions and attributes is an aesthetic tributary of mainstream portraiture which runs parallel to it: the realm of found portraits––portraits frequently dealing with anonymous sitters and executed by little known or unknown creators, and culled from such oblivious sources as flea markets, thrift stores, and even garbage bins.
This exhibition is a first-of-its-kind compilation of canvases from this obscure pictorial realm. Likenesses of friends and relatives, public personalities and family pets, of bakers, bankers, clowns and tramps, these humble creations exhibit truths which belie their naive origins. Innately low-brow and falling outside the conventional boundaries of academic and curatorial sanction, they form a vital part of a burgeoning underground aesthetic, and call for the legitimization of an all-but-neglected category in the taxonomy of postmodernism.
Jeffrey Vallance received his B.A. from the California State University, Northridge in 1979 and an MFA from The Otis Art Institute of the Parsons School of Design, Los Angeles in 1981. His work explores miraculous phenomena, paranormal events, and bizarre relationships between the religious and the secular. Since the early 70s, Vallance has shown his work internationally in both traditional museum and gallery settings as well as in more unconventional institutions such as The Liberace Museum in Las Vegas and Ron Lee's World of Clowns Museum in Henderson, Nevada. Vallance's solo exhibitions include the Tasmanian Museum, Australia, the Art Institute of Boston, and the Santa Monica Museum of Art, California. He lives and works in California. Showing concurrently with APOCALYPSO FACTO: NEW WORKS BY ROBBIE CONAL.