STAND STILL. June 9, 2018 -- Art Cube Gallery

Lyrical Landscapes:

Stand Still by Mark Andy Garcia
By Carlomar Arcangel Daoana

Landscape, as a painting genre, has had a long tradition—imagined and re-imagined by Claude Lorrain, John Constable, and Vincent Van Gogh, among many others. The sheer spectacle of the beauty of the external is celebrated, affirmed, and enlarged. This is the world man has not created, and he has sung it time and time again through art.

In the solo exhibition of Mark Andy Garcia, Stand Still, the landscape is paramount, without human intervention and interruption, pure in their gorgeous, vital flow. The characteristic energy of his technique--expressed through rapid, coruscating strokes—is still here, so much so that what we perceive is not merely dramatic space but the subjectivity of the artist, his way of seeing. 

One may say, of course, that this is an internal landscape, the visible expression of Garcia’s yearning—the bristling trees, the mottled colors of flowers, the luminous shadows. As viewers, we are asked to immerse ourselves in the on-rush of the kaleidoscopic passage of the artist’s hand guided by his transformative inner eye. This is not a mere copy of the environment but a landscape that is the vessel of the artist’s spirit.

While this is true, the landscape is also an articulation of Garcia’s contemplation of what constitutes the spirit and by, extension, God’s grace on mankind. These are deeply spiritual works, reflected not only by the titles of the paintings (“His Ways, “Under His Shade”) but also by the stalwart tree that presides over the flatness of the field, the towering presence that connects earth and sky.

This tree is an allegorical manifestation of God—or at least his quiet, unobtrusive intercession, his immense refuge that is cool as a shade. Swaddled in white light, each tree calls forth the eye like a flashing lighthouse in the dark. Amid the luminescent, glittering surface of Garcia’s works, the tree is the one thing more brilliant than the rest. It beckons.

This light is all the more incandescent in the work, “The Wind Passeth,” in which a congregation of trees have lost their leaves in a season of fall. When the wind passes—or any external force that reduces us to bare essentials—one can count on the light that ignites the entire sky. The light is what the wind can never take away. The light is what remains.

This is one of Mark Andy Garcia’s most intimate exhibitions, because what he offers is a testament of faith. These are hopeful, nourishing, life-affirming works, cultivated by a belief in a power that sustains us even if we are not looking. What we only need to do is to stand still and the morning, just like what a title of the work states, will be on its way.

"In Perfect Time", oil on canvas, 96 x 96 inches - 2108

"The Morning was on it's Way", oil on canvas, 48 x 48 inches - 2108

"His Ways", oil on canvas, 48 x 48 inches - 2108

"Under His Shade", oil on canvas, 48 x 48 inches - 2108

"TheWind Passeth", oil on canvas, 48 x 48 inches - 2108

"Stand Still", oil on canvas, 72 x 48 inches - 2108