Lord Help Us Get It All Together
Irzyk + O’Day
May 5th Reception, 6-8:30 pm
Adam O’Day was born in Murfreesboro, TN.
BFA in Illustration/Design from The Art Institute of Boston at Lesley University 2005
His painting studio is in Abington, MA
He lives in Abington with his wife Meghan and Daughter Penelope
Vanessa Irzyk was born in New Bedford, MA.
BFA in Painting & Art Education from Massachusetts College of Art and Design in 2007.
She paints in her studio in the Distillery in South Boston and lives in East Boston
She teaches art at Newton Montessori School and local non-profit Art Centers.
Lord Help Us Get It All Together is based purely in dreams and in the creative mind. When Adam O’Day was a child, something in his Grandfather’s basement caught his eye. Near the desk and the workbench hung a Shroud of Turin Hologram, and a plaque reading, “Lord Help Us Get It All Together.” When the family would visit, they would sleep in the basement, and the Hologram would follow them around the room, as they got ready for bed. Adam didn’t know it was Jesus of Nazareth at the time, but he saw him as a mystical being, inspiring many years of thinking about who this Hologram could be. Was he a pirate or a warlock of some kind? He asked Grandpa George and was told that the Shroud of Turin proves Jesus was in fact the Savior. George spent a good portion of his life working to validate the shroud along with the Catholic Church. Adam now possesses these family relics as fond keepsakes of his Grandparents George and Kate. Kate worked at the Atlanta High Museum and taught Adam much about art at a young age. This show is dedicated to Kate and George, who were always searching for answers.
This exhibit aims to bridge the gap between two planes of consciousness, and blends the mind’s eye with memories. The artist explores the connections between them with expressive color, mark-making rhythms and drawing. As a musician and a drummer, Adam uses patterns of color and rhythmic brushstrokes to build structures and layer paint. There is an inner hopefulness to the work, with an underside of desperation. One of the paintings for the show is the Fall of Humanity octagon. Here, we see despair and human agony, illustrating just how grave our futuristic vision has become. But with all patterns, life’s lows will always be outshined by humanity’s colorful beauty.
“’Why do you use all the colors of the rainbow, at the same time?’ They say. Because when we live in such a gray, hopeless place, you need some bright neons and pastels to bring out all the cheerful things in life. I draw from life. I paint from what the memory felt like.” – Adam O’Day, BDCwire
For the past year Vanessa Irzyk has been focusing on a series of circular paintings. They are 17.25″ in diameter and created with acrylic paint on 300 lb watercolor paper. The paintings are an exploration of shapes and patterns in space. Each painting is evoked by the background color palette: a blurry space created with bright almost neon colors applied by thin acrylic paint. From there, shapes are created both opaque and patterned. Each part of the painting is inspired by the previous shape and is meant to transport the viewer to a hypnotic and unusual space. The paintings can make sense from a distance yet at closer view the audience can investigate the intricate shapes and sometimes-obsessive patterns made from a flat brush.
Throughout the years Irzyk has used color as her concurrent theme. Finding the right combination and balance is a great challenge and creates a satisfying game. Her 4” x 6” assemblages come from the excess paper cut from the circle shapes. They are tiny experiments, where the paper is so small the brushstrokes can make a greater impact. These small paintings serve as “sketches” for bigger paintings while being able to stand in a group; tiny soldiers all in line.
“People always think my paintings look like they were made on the computer, but each line is painted with a flat brush. The pattern making process is zen and meditative. I enjoy making work that looks machine-made in its uniformity, yet when you look close you see the human hand and subtle error.” -Vanessa Irzyk