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When White is Wrong


The McLoughlin Gallery presents “When White is Wrong”, a group exhibition of Will Day,

Zhuang Hong Yi, Gavin Rain and Una Ryan

Works on view October 1 – 31, 2015


“A picture, before being a war horse or a nude woman, is essentially a flat surface covered with colors assembled in a certain order”. Maurice Denis, painter and theorist (1870-1943)


San Francisco, CA (September 9, 2015)— Color has always had its importance in art history; since the beginning it had the power to evoke and express feelings, but it has also always been second to composition and form.  In the exhibition, “When White is Wrong”, four artists express their own interpretation of color.  Gavin Rain, neo-pointillist; Zhuang Hong Yi, with his 3D works that mixes his Chinese origins with his European experiences; Una Ryan, a scientist and self taught artist overlays organic images; Will Day, traditional abstract painter.


Day, like the Impressionists, believes the importance of a painting lay not in the form and drawing, but in the light and color.  His intent is to capture the effect of light focusing on tone and color instead of composition.   Using his architectural background, Day builds his paintings incorporating spatial and aesthetic concepts while utilizing the tools of his trade to construct his paintings.


Rain’s work, neo-pointillism, is influenced by Seurat and the Russian Avant Garde of the 1900’s.  As a South African, he wanted to maintain a regional influence into his work.  The colors selected for the paintings are based on African tribal colors.  Like the Fauvists, Rain uses colors as independent elements on the canvas to describe a mood without being representative as noted when in close proximity to his paintings. 


Hong Yi’s works represent beauty, sophistication and high level of perfection.  Hand painted rice paper referencing his Chinese background is used to create impressionist paintings.  Yi’s intent, like the early Impressionists, is to visually translate emotions and a mystical quality that could express feeling about a subject rather than just describe a scene.


Ryan bases her work on black and white electron micrographs of living cells overlaying them with color field satellite images of the earth’s surface.  In her quest to search for scientific truths, Ryan’s work now explores philosophical truths; “Where do we fit into this immense universe”?  The amalgamation of these subject matters at first glance appears dissimilar, but upon further contemplating a closer association is perceived.  Color is the vehicle connecting the micro and macro perspective of these two worlds.


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