RARE is pleased to announce a new series of paintings by Christina Shurts in her New York solo debut entitled Luxury Soup. The show, which opens March 17 and runs through April 14, also marks her fifth one-person exhibition.
Shurts’ latest work embodies a nostalgic longing for getaways and vacationlands of both a recollected past and an idealized future. She transforms familiar archetypes like childhood tree houses, seaside amusement parks, oceanfront boardwalks, and long-deserted beach resorts and vacation cottages into alternate realities that are subtly apocalyptic yet enticing, seemingly abandoned but inviting. Demonstrating an uncanny knack for capturing the “calm before” or the “calm after” the so-called storm or utopian moment, Shurts translates the debris of her own history into grand instances of yearning not beholden to the twin pillars of time and place.
The imagery in Shurts’ paintings is derived from memories, relics of her childhood, personal photographs, decor magazines, and films. They serve as a treasure chest of resources that allows her to mine and investigate the philosophical issues to which nostalgic longing gives rise. After all, what is this phenomenon – a chance for true regeneration or a mere daydream to escape the doldrums of everyday living, or perhaps even an appeal to the darker side of human nature? The artist’s deployment of familiar physical constructs is complemented by her use of unusually keyed colors, thin tints and washes, and tear-like and rain-imitating drips that suffuse her paintings with an aura of yearning for other times.
Shurts received a BA from the University of California at Irvine in 2001, and obtained her MFA from California State University at Long Beach in 2010. She has exhibited in New York, Los Angeles, and London, participating in solo and group shows at various venues including the Torrance Art Museum, Pacific Design Center, Gatov Gallery, Lawrence Asher Gallery, LA Municipal Art Gallery, LOFT Gallery, and the Saatchi Gallery in London. Within the last year her work has been included in two New American Paintings annuals (No. 87 & No. 91).