"Classic Inspirations" Exhibit on Display in Foxworthy Gallery

By artist and instructor Kris Doe; the exhibit continues through Oct. 10.

KDoe-Big LennySEPTEMBER 4, 2013 -- An exhibit of paintings and drawings by Allan Hancock College art instructor Kristopher Doe titled “Classic Inspirations” will be on display September 3 through October 10 in Allan Hancock College’s Ann Foxworthy Gallery.  The gallery is located in the Academic Resource Center, Bldg. L-South, in the heart of the Santa Maria campus.

Doe is an avid backpacker, traveler and artist, whose muse is the world he sees.  His images of neon diner signs, travels to Cuba and large-scale California landscape paintings are featured in the exhibit.

A graduate of Pasadena’s Art Center College of Art and Design, Doe grew up in Southern California during the explosion of 1960s pop culture.  Doe recalls that it was an exciting, rapid break from traditional culture into the world of the youth generation, brightly colored plastics and modern art.  “Though that time was both turbulent and exciting, I always felt a sense of nostalgia for a time prior to mine,” he said.  “Since early childhood, I’ve been captivated by the artistic and stylistic trends of bygone eras.”  He rattles off a list of influences:  the elegance of Art Deco, illustrators like N.C. Wyeth and Maxfield Parrish, the California impressionist painters, the energy of the ‘40s and exuberant ‘50s – which he melds with modern styles of industrial design, commercial illustration and artists like Andy Warhol.

KDoe-Mo'sBBQGallery Director Marti Fast is excited about the opportunity to exhibit Doe’s paintings and drawings.  “The artist brought together three themes that clearly convey his desire to merge traditional and modern influences.  I was taken with what Kris sees, and the energy he invests in his work.  The variety of scale is exciting, too – it feels like you can almost step right in to some of these huge sunlit landscapes of Lake Powell, while the Cuba pastels have a smoky, darker appeal that calls more mysteriously to my imagination.  The neon makes me smile and remember.  Kris invites the viewer to feel what he felt and saw in a moment of time.”

Over a five-year period, Doe had the opportunity to travel in Cuba, an island country that has been off limits to Americans for more than 50 years.  Inspired by the culture there, he created deep, rich pastel drawings depicting the cars, architecture and faces of the people.  “I was exposed to a vibrant culture,” he says, “that – despite totalitarian rule – teemed with passion and warmth.  Between the grand Spanish Colonial architecture and the abundance of classic American automobiles throughout Old Havana, it was a fascinating look back in time while being firmly planted in the world of today.”

KDoe-HeliosHideoutThe San Luis Obispo resident is a fine arts instructor at both Allan Hancock College and Cuesta College.  One of his other passions is classic neon signage at smaller home-grown diners.  On a recent cross-country road trip to Maryland, he was struck by the sameness of national chain restaurants across America – same signs, same architecture, same food.  For Doe, it became a personal mission on that trip to search out and enjoy the offerings of long-established eateries and venues where the atmosphere and service reflect a personal and time-honored tradition.  With diners from Texas to California, this series of smaller oils includes local favorites such as Mo’s BBQ in San Luis Obispo, and Alex BBQ in Shell Beach.  “I take great pleasure in capturing and recording our rapidly disappearing Americana,” he said.

Gallery hours are Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 7:45 p.m., and Friday, 9 a.m. to 2:45 p.m., closed weekends and school holidays.   Questions?  Contact Public Affairs at 922-6966 ext. 3764, the fine arts department at ext. 3252, or Marti Fast at ext. 3465.

- AHC -

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Last Modified May 2, 2014