Exclusion - Joshua Elias


Exclusion - oil on canvas

March 1st - 31st, 2014


"I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free" - Michaelangelo

Joshua Elias approaches painting in a similar way, letting intuition guide his process. As he explains: "Things that don't make sense in the real world, can make sense in the imaginary world." His works are an exploration of the energetic transmission of abstraction. All these paintings were created simultaneously in a ritualistic process: they stand out individually yet offer a bonding narrative. "There's an energy and it's felt when people see it."

The creative process is similar for every work: the artist fabricates his paint from raw pigments, and then works at different levels of pressure. The creation of these works is in no way predestined or intellectualized, but rather recognized during the painting process and based on feeling and an innate understanding. 

“Exclusion”, the latest of this series, is an internal landscape.  On one hand, this piece plays around with solidity (strong yet limited color palette), yet juxtaposes an ether/water effect (feeling of a cloud) which creates lots of movement. The palette is purposely limited: this piece focuses on a connection with color, and underlines that his work is feeling-based, where the intuitive muscle predominates (rather than the rational). 

"Threshold"  plays with American color palettes, exploring ideas of space and air. The challenge, and appeal, of this piece was to create both movement (the brush strokes underline this" twisting, turning and contorsing) and space.


The "Salmon Kiss” painting was based off “Threshold” (twin painting) and in a way is a much looser version of it: offering lighter energy and movement: with the visibility of the hand at work. 

“ Reflections Of...”: the left hand corner was carved out and left as an opening by the artist (in case you need to escape). Elias created horizontal movements, which are swifter.  

Joshua Elias is originally from Chicago, although has been a Los Angelino for many years now. He received his BFA from San Diego State University and went on to study Design Art and Architecture in Santa Monica and Otis Parsons, Los Angeles. He also learnt a great deal from working with classical painting master, and Getty consultant, Sylvana Barrett. He received an artist residency at Fundacion Valaparaiso in Mojacar, Spain and some of his works were shown at the Kohler 'Home for Future' at TED.com. His paintings have been widely collected by individuals and corporations, including the Rand Corporation in Santa Monica, commissions for the Viceroy Hotel, and currently working on works for the Arts House. 

To view Joshua's painting process, watch this video:

Joshua Elias: The Thunderous Exclusion of the Hypnagogic