Leroy Forney, on the Grid

Leroy Forney, Shelter, Row on Row, UPS Box and SEPTA forms, on the GridOff the Wall Gallery at Dirty Franks

October First Friday I caught the 17 bus home from 2nd and Market Streets and Leroy Forney was riding home, too, we were both beat after gallery hopping. Leroy, who I know as a painter, invited me to his home/studio to see what he was working on for the the upcoming on the Grid at  Off the Wall Gallery at Dirty Franks. Forney showed me the empty UPS box and explained how he was going to create a crowded urban landscape scene out of found objects. It was such a DuChamp-ian moment, a box is a box, the artist truly visualized the scene and was trying to verbalize the concept. I was already on art over-load, what was he talking about?

Shelter, Row on Row, exploits Leroy Forneys painterly eye limiting his palette to the cardboard, letting the message in the materials advertise the idea. Even though the piece is found object, the artist mixes design, painting, sculpture and drama into the piece. The urban skyline feels very Philly but Leroy recently was on a painting residency in China and saw real urban congestion. I was really happy to see the finished artwork in the show, all of his entries were juried into the exhibition, the three pieces are in the vitrine space.

“My cityscapes explore the significance of the built environment that is reflected in the visual personality, adaptation of function, and significance of the vistas we so often see without seeing.” – Leroy Forney

Leroy Forney, on the Grid

Leroy Forney, Bouquet, urban object collection, on the GridOff the Wall Gallery at Dirty Franks

Leroy Forney, on the Grid

Leroy Forney, Explosion, urban object collection, on the GridOff the Wall Gallery at Dirty Franks, 13th and Pine Streets, Philadelphia, PA, through December 27th.

The urban object collections are ‘Spot On!’ as Eva Preston would say. Made from found objects, temporary utilitarian waste, is up-cycled into drawings in space, not really assemblage art. There is such a strange beauty and weirdness in the collections, they feel like picked flowers but the shapes are sending out signals to fool the eye like a chameleon. The truth is these flowers will never wilt, will never die, they are made of industrial waste created for modern convenience.

The on the Grid is an amazing collection of Philadelphia artists expressing their own unique perspective on urban life. Follow the Off the Wall Gallery at Dirty Franks facebook page for insights into the artwork written by Togo Travalia.

Written by DoN Brewerexcept where noted.

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