Thursday, August 25, 2011


"The Women" -Paintings by Alison Van Pelt - brings museum status paintings to Downtown, San Diego. This collection was previously exhibited at the prestigious DAI. Founded in 1919, The Dayton Art Institute is a premier fine art museum located in Dayton, Ohio.   In addition to exhibiting outstanding special exhibitions and impressive collections of art from throughout the world, the museum is renowned for education programming that includes an array of offerings for diverse audiences.

Eva Hesse, Meret Oppenheim, Elaine DeKooning and Georgia O'Keefe are a few of the famous, and at times, rather infamous women that will be gracing the walls of the Promenade East entrance of Hilton San Diego Bayside. These oversized canvases measuring 9 feet x 7 feet honoring female artists are to be installed by Alexander Salazar Fine Art, commencing August 23, 2011 and on view through to October 15, 2011. It is an honor for Alexander Salazar Fine Art to bring the museum featured works of Alison Van Pelt to the city of San Diego during Art Month.

Alison Van Pelt: The Women includes paintings of female artists who built their careers prior to the women's liberation movement. "I was interested in them as artists, but also as exceptional women," explains Van Pelt. "They were mavericks at a time when women were marginalized from the mainstream art world." All of the paintings are large scale -- 9 feet by 7 feet -- and primarily focus on the face of the subject. "I painted these women on a grand scale, somewhat as a form of idolatry," says Van Pelt. "I admire them now and have looked up to most of them since I was young. In terms of framing the face, there is subtle variation. I am trying to capture character. With some I went close in on the face like Helen Frankenthaler, while with others like Frida Kahlo, I pan out slightly, depending upon what I find to be essential. Kahlo's hair, ribbons, and the line of her neck were all a part of her character as were her facial features."

Alison Van Pelt was born and raised in Los Angeles. She studied art at UCLA, Art Center, Otis Parsons and the Florence Academy of Art in Florence, Italy. Raised in the open-minded climate of 1970s Los Angeles, she has been influenced by such disparate sources as Agnes Martin, Robert Rauschenberg, Paramahansa Yogananda, Helmut Newton, Dan Millman, Yayoi Kusama and Hunter S. Thompson (just to name a few). The subjects of her paintings range from animals to prizefighters to celebrities, spiritual leaders, Native American warriors and heads of state. Utilizing found images of these figures, she begins the complex process of drawing and painting a classical portrait, then blurring and rebuilding the oil on the canvas, accumulating and disintegrating, until the result is a beautiful, purposely-degraded, mystical evocation of her subject. Her painstaking technique, with its exquisite light and shadow, layers upon layers of paint, ambiguous, yet meticulous, brush strokes, coalesced by her discipline and meditative touch, brings out the best in her subjects. The paintings are revealing yet mysterious; they are not idealized, but humanized.

Van Pelts work has been exhibited in solo shows at The Fresno Art Museum and The Dayton Art Institute, as well as in galleries throughout the North America and Europe, and is represented in significant public collections, such as the Armand Hammer Museum, the Frederick R. Weisman Art Foundation, the Jumex Foundation in Mexico City, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, NASA, and the Studio Museum in Harlem. She currently lives and works in Santa Monica, CA.

She is currently represented by Alexander Salazar Fine Art in San Diego. 

"The Women" installation will be showcased August 23-October 15, 2011
Opening reception: September 3, 2011 (7-9pm)
Artwalk on the Bay Reception - September 10, 2011
Closing Reception: October 15, 2011 (7-9pm)

Hilton San Diego Bayfront
1 Park Boulevard
San Diego, California
United States 92101
Tel: 1-619-564-3333   
Fax:  1-619-564-3344


Alexander Salazar Fine Art
Tel: 619-531-8996
Fax: 619-531-8998
Visit for more information.

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