Laura Wacha

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Laura Wacha , Statement
My work is narrative in nature, and simply put, contains allegories of workaday life and global strife. Sure that may sound dire and dismal, but my objects and images are always flamboyantly colored and packed with cartoonish humor. My never-ending cast of characters are both familiar and fantastic, sometimes bordering on the grotesque but always weirdly funny and beautifully executed.

By giving equal importance to topics domestically mundane and internationally tragic, I cheerfully explore the blurry space between the personal and political. The aim of my visual explorations is to create multiple avenues of questions rather than one dead-end answer. I aspire to create a sort of visual itch that will linger like a puzzle left unsolved. Tucked between my rather whimsical creatures I scoop out brightly colored dollops of intrigue and ambiguity to serve as an invitation to fill in the narrative blanks and thus allow the viewer to relate personally to the piece and vice versa.

Opportunity exists in the act of art making to create a pleasurable anxiety through the narrative presented, but more importantly, in the manner that the story is told. Composition and color urge me to take full advantage of their potential through balance, discord and repetition. In my work, for every action there is a reaction or rebuke, for every blue there is an orange or green, for every shape there is it's echo and void. I work on these aesthetic aspects of my paintings rather intuitively, keeping at it until the canvas feels like the controlled explosion of design and color that best expresses the tenor I am aiming for.

Laura Wacha, Bio
Born and raised in Sarasota, Florida, my formative years were steeped in the cheerfully low and tastelessly high of American culture; the usual Florida kitsch and kin. From retired circus performers and aging munchkins, to wealthy blue haired dowagers with their dyed-to-match poodles, I found many characters worthy of note, and saw in circus magnate John Ringlings' marvelous collection of theatrical paintings how art could both amaze and amuse. Declaring myself an artist at age three, I attended pro-wrestling matches and watched the greyhounds chase the mechanical rabbit in practice runs at the dog track. I recited the Brownie Promise at a neighbor's modest ranch house and was bused to classes at a special campus set aside for gifted students, eventually leaving Florida and completing my liberal arts education by graduating cum laude from Mt. Holyoke College in S. Hadley, Massachusetts. During the 1980's I stubbornly produced works in many different styles and materials despite a couple of moves to the U.K. and a few years criss-crossing the U.S. in a Datsun.

In 1992 I began painting in earnest in acrylic on canvas. At present count I have produced well over 300 paintings, mountains of sculptures in both papier mache and clay, two sci fi novels, and a couple of wonderful children. My studio and I live on a 5 acre compound of dead cars, broken appliances, and old trailers in the New Mexico desert.

 

Laura Wacha b.1961, Sarasota, Florida, U.S.A.
Education: 1983, BA, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley, Massachusetts

Awards: President's Award, 2015, NMAEA

Local Treasure, 2015, AABA Albuquerque, NM

Best of Albuquerque, Best Visual Artist 2014, Albuquerque The Magazine

Select Exhibitions:

2017 Guns to Art, form & concept gallery, Santa Fe, NM. Juried group.
Local Treasures, NMCC Gallery with a Cause, Albuquerque, NM.
Wonderfully Weird Wonders IV, Curly Tale Fine Art, Chicago, IL. Invitational group.
Local Treasures, Andaluz Hotel, Albuquerque, NM.
Featured Artist, Ghostwolf Gallery, Albuquerque, NM.

2016 Wonderfully Weird Wonders III, Curly Tale Fine Art, Chicago, IL Invitational group.
Imaginary Friends and Fools, Tortuga Gallery, Albuquerque, NM. Three person show.
The Figure in Contemporary Painting, Matrix Fine Art, Albuquerque, NM. Invitat'l grp.

2015 WILD+LIFE, Page Coleman Gallery, Abq, NM. Group show to benefit Wildlife Rescue.
Circus Interruptus, Kimo Theater Gallery, Albuquerque, NM. Two person show.
Twitterpated/Deflated, Downtown Contemporary Gallery, Abq, NM. Invitational grp.
Dog and Pony Show, Matrix Fine Art, Albuquerque, NM. Solo exhibit.

2014 Transformations, Tortuga Gallery, Albuquerque, NM. Juried group.
Parallel Worlds, So. Broadway Cultural Center, Albuquerque, NM. Invitational group.

2013 Lolo Solo, UNM Valencia Fine Arts Gallery, Los Lunas, NM. Solo exhibit.
Likely Stories, Matrix Fine Art, Albuquerque, NM. Solo exhibit.

2011 Fifty, Matrix Fine Art, Albuquerque, NM. Solo exhibit.

2009 Albuquerque Now, The Albuquerque Museum of Art and History. Invitational group.
Sock Puppets And Spilt Milk, Matrix Fine Art, Albuquerque, NM. Solo exhibit.
2008
Biennial Southwest 08, The Albuquerque Museum of Art and History. Juried group.
Circus Show, A Bitchin' Space and Verve Gallery, Sacramento, CA. Invitational group.
Everything But The Kitschen Sync, La Luz de Jesus Gallery, LA, CA. Juried invitational.
2007 Good Intentions, Matrix Fine Art, Albuquerque, NM. Solo Exhibit.
2006 Katrina Lasko Gallery, Bernalillo, NM. Group exhibit.
2005 Transitions, Albuquerque Contemporary 2005, Albuquerque, NM. Juried group exhibit.
2004 Aniles Fabulae, Katrina Lasko Gallery, Bernallio, NM. Solo exhibit.
Texas National 2004, Stephen F. Austin State University. Nacogdoches, TX. Juried.
SoQ, Museum of Fine Arts, Santa Fe, NM. Invitational group exhibit.
2002 Coleman Gallery, Albuquerque, NM. Two person and group exhibits.
Art Of Albuquerque, Magnifico!, Albuquerque Museum, Albuquerque, NM. Juried group.
2001 Coleman Gallery, Albuquerque, NM. Group exhibit.
La Luz de Jesus Gallery, Los Angeles, CA. Juried invitational.
2000 More Confessions of a Compulsive Painter, Coleman Gallery, Albuquerque, NM. Solo.
Coleman Gallery, Albuquerque, NM. Group exhibit.
Texas National 2000, Stephen F. Austin State University. Nacogdoches, TX. Juried.
1999 Why Albuquerque? , Magnifico!, Albuquerque Museum, Albuquerque, NM. Juried group.
Plan B Gallery, Santa Fe, NM. Invitational group exhibit.
Confessions of a Compulsive Painter,Coleman Gallery, Albuquerque, NM. Solo exhibit.
1998 Texas National 98, Stephen F. Austin State University, Nacogdoches, TX. Juried.
FAC Annual, Fine Arts Center, Lubbock, TX. Juried group exhibit.
1997 Coleman Gallery, Albuquerque, NM. Two person exhibit and group exhibit.
1996 Tartan Pony Gallery, Santa Fe, NM. Group exhibit.
AleRT, SITE Santa Fe, Albuquerque and Santa Fe, NM. Juried group exhibit.
Southwest '96, Museum of Fine Arts, Santa Fe, NM. Juried group exhibit.
1995 Harwood Art Center Gallery, Albuquerque, NM. Two person exhibit.
1994 Love Objects, Salt Of The Earth, Albuquerque, NM. Group exhibit.
1993 Women Artists '93, Matrix Gallery, Sacramento, CA. Juried group. Merit award.
Java Joe's, Albuquerque, NM. Solo exhibit.
Visions of Excellence, Albuquerque, NM. Juried group exhibit. Merit award.
1992 What's It To Ya', San Francisco, CA. Invitational group exhibit.
1990 Bristol City Museum, Bristol, England. Juried group exhibit.
Clifton Arts Club, Bristol, England. Juried group exhibit.
1987 Nightingale Theatre, Brighton, England. Screening of independent film-makers.
1986 Brighton Gallery of Fine Arts, Brighton, England. Invitational group exhibit.