Chaos to Serenity: Jason REVOK's "Descending" @ Dio Horia Mykonos, Greece
Just this morning, as I was fantasizing about a summer trip to the Greek isles, news came that Jason REVOK’s paintings would be making that dreamy trip instead! So good news for the influential graffiti artist, who is a frequent Juxtapoz subject, always newsworthy and driven to experiment. In fact, the Detroit-based artist’s paintings are just about on their way to the Dio Horia gallery for a solo exhibition, Descending, which will be ascending in the gallery’s main space in Mykonos. In this series of REVOK’s spirograph works, famously, and at times, notoriously documented on the artist’s IG account, he has engineered his own mechanics and methods to replicate controlled chaos and unpredictably harnessed patterns that stem from his graffiti born abstractions and ventures into urban collage works so rife with the randomness of studio ingenuity.
REVOK remains one of the most intriguing artists we’ve covered over our three decades, as he has evolved from one of Los Angeles’s most vibrant and bold graffiti artists, driven to to move (where else?) to Detroit to explore collage within the city’s industrial ruins, then back to LA to delve deeper into what he calls ingenuity with simple tools. The gallery notes that by calling the series Descending, REVOK has captured the collective mood of a chaotic year, and even in that characterization, it’s clear that Descending speaks of the chaos and unpredictability of his own practice. He has created the potential of Chance in these works, where no work contained in his self-created machine can be replicated, and as the gallery notes, “These markings create roulette curve paintings of endless mesmerizing spirals on circular panels. Spray paint is used to contradict the meditative, peaceful design of the spirals and add imperfections that will purposely, disrupt the harmony of the pieces and offer their viewer, a chance to acknowledge the visual language created in the artwork’s space.”
That REVOK will be showcasing a series of works created in his massive new studio in Detroit, as opposed to America’s year of self destruction, on a small island in the Mediterrean is poetic justice. Along with the Mykonos vase, “one of the earliest dated objects (Archaic period, c. 675 BC) to depict the Trojan Horse from Homer's telling of the Trojan war in the Iliad," this is a beautiful story of works traveling across the globe from America’s motor city and Descending into Paradise. —Evan Pricco