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Joshua Hagler: Drawing in the Dark

Cris Worley Fine Arts

This is an in-person event

Exhibition Title: Joshua Hagler: Drawing in the Dark
Exhibition Dates: April 3 – May 8, 2021
Open House (artist will be in attendance): Saturday, April 3rd, 12 - 4pm

Cris Worley Fine Arts is proud to present our first solo exhibition with Roswell, New Mexico-based artist, Joshua
Hagler. The exhibition entitled, Drawing in the Dark, opens Saturday, April 3rd, and will be on view through May 8th, 2021. The gallery will hold an Open House, Saturday, April 3rd from noon to 4pm. The artist will be in attendance. No appointment is required; the gallery will allow up to 10 visitors in the space at a time.

The phrase “drawing in the dark” hits on many levels in Joshua Hagler’s recent body of paintings, which were
conceived and executed during the COVID-19 pandemic. Hagler, like many, found himself navigating unique
personal circumstances, including a marriage and the birth of his first child. Images of sonograms taken during various stages of pregnancy then became fodder for a new body of work. Drawing upon drawing of original sonogram images were executed and layered in paint and mixed media, a process which rendered the original subject unrecognizable. By compressing multiple drawings onto one picture plane, Hagler remarks, “I would say they appear simply as space, or rather, place.”

Alongside the Sonogram paintings, Drawing in the Dark features works created from sketches made outdoors at night. “In the evenings leading up to the 2020 solstice, I made blind contour drawings of the landscape in New Mexico’s Hondo Valley and Lincoln National Forest as Saturn and Jupiter inched toward their eventual conjunction,” says Hagler. “Not more than twenty feet ahead of me was a pair of deer standing ghostly still watching me. As my eyes continued to adjust, I saw the herd was many…all waiting for me to dumbly pass by. So I went about the challenge of trying to draw them without seeing them or my paper very well. It was an incredible experience.” These rapid, blind contour drawings, pieced and layered in paint and mixed media, serve as the source of two poignant large-scale works: Cathedral and Between Earth and Here, which at 10 x 16 feet is the largest work the artist has made to date.

Joshua Hagler lived and worked in San Francisco and then Los Angeles for fifteen years before moving to Roswell,
New Mexico in 2018 as a grant recipient of the year-long Roswell Artist in Residence Program. He and his wife,
contemporary artist Maja Ruznic, now live and work in Roswell. Hagler was born at Mountain Home Air Force Base
in Idaho in 1979 and is a first-generation college graduate with a visual communications degree from the University of Arizona in Tucson. In 2020 he was Hopper Prize Finalist. In 2018, he mounted two museum exhibitions: at the Brand Library and Art Center in Los Angeles, and the Roswell Museum and Art Center in New Mexico, entitled The River Lethe, and Love Letters to the Poorly Regarded, respectively. Hagler has exhibited paintings, sculpture, video, and animation in galleries and museums in North and South America, U.K., Europe, and Australia including a long list of solo exhibitions. Hagler has completed residencies abroad in France, Italy and Norway. Reviews and features about the work, as well as his own poems and essays, have appeared in a variety of publications and media outlets in the U.S. and other parts of the world, including GQ Magazine and Italian Vogue.

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