Tayloe Piggott Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition spotlighting the Boise, Idahobased
painter, Charles Gill. The show focuses on the artist’s Chip Series and is titled “Palette Scraps.”
Everyone is welcome to celebrate Charles Gill and the exhibition during an opening reception on
Friday, May 17 from 5 to 8pm; the exhibition will run through July 6.
For nearly seven decades, Charles Gill has been approaching art as “a celebration of boredom.” The
stuff of life, in all its banality, becomes source material for his sophisticated, nuanced compositions.
Whether approaching the interiors of suburban homes or his color palettes on index cards, Charles
remakes the mundane as progressive and profound. With an oeuvre spanning as many genres as
styles, his work has drawn comparisons to a wide roster of esteemed artists from Robert Motherwell,
Gerhard Richter, and Jasper Johns to his college roommate Robert Bechtle. “If I have a signature
style,” Charles has said of his work, “it’s not to be found in the similarities between one painting and
the next, but in the differences.”
As an artist, Charles has charted a course all his own. Born in Boise, Idaho, he studied under Richard
Diebenkorn at the California College of Arts & Crafts in Oakland, CA and earned his masters from Mills
College. With ties to the Bay Area Figurative School and the first generation Abstract Expressionists, he
has long explored iterations on still lifes and landscapes: his “Headcheese” series found him
deconstructing and reconstituting images of 1950s interiors pulled from the pages of Ladies Home
Journal. His “Drywall Landscapes” delved deeper into suburbia by reconsidering ranch-style homes as
boundary-shifting silhouettes that blur distinction between landscape and still life, realism and
abstraction. “I paint the ordinary,” he has said, “but behind the façade are the American dream and
the American nightmare.”
For this exhibition at the Tayloe Piggott Gallery, Charles brings his Chip Series, an ongoing exploration
that began as blank index cards he daubed with paint to test colors. Over the years, he amassed a
stash of color notations which, when he considered en masse, became abstract formal compositions.
Like Chuck Close, Charles projects slides of the cards onto canvas to achieve microscopic moments of
realism: a hole punch, a dog-eared corner or newsprint peeking through. The Chip Series speaks to his
virtuosity with non-traditional visual patterns and rhythms.
Throughout his career, Charles has struck a balance between being an artist and an art professor. His
classroom creed can be seen in the detail he achieves in every inch of his paintings; he would
challenge his art students to break down their compositions into multiple units and to make each
section, even an empty corner, an interesting painting in its own right. So focused on the painterly
process, his compositions at once demonstrate his creative act while simultaneously questioning the
nature of painting itself.
It seems to me that making art is akin to navigation. That is: keeping track of where we are in space
and time. I am inspired by close observation of the most ordinary aspects of my immediate
surroundings, the here and the now, the quotidian stuff of everyday. Mow the lawn. Clean the garage.
Paint a picture: sober little strokes, scrapes, swipes and smears of colored mud accumulate like
thousands upon thousands of otherwise unremarkable moments.
For further information regarding the exhibition and Tayloe Piggott Gallery, please visit us online at
www.tayloepiggottgallery.com or contact us at 307.733.0555 or [email protected]