JOHN McLAUGHLIN


STATEMENT

My paintings and drawings are part of my own lineage of abstraction that has evolved over some twenty five years.  My work has always arisen from an earnest search for resolution in a range of gestures, movements and erasures. The appearance and meaning of the resolution has developed in the meandering progression of the creative process. I continue my investigation into the possibilities of the accidental along with the more deliberate forms and lines in both nature and the man-made world. The labors are personal, but also come from a place of acutely studied history of art, design and music.  Similar to a musical composition, I slowly create my paintings by building on and modifying motifs applied in previous layers. I embrace improvisational gestures and incidents allowing some of the previous marks to show in a palimpsest manner. Among this rich layering are fits and starts of lines, doodles and sketches. This action occurs in so many layers, that some images are barely perceivable, giving insight into my thought process and leaves the viewer searching for more clues. On the top layer are hazy spaces of the paintings hard-lined, organic shapes of color and line drawings that conjure a quirky aggregate of the ancient, scientific and industrial hieroglyphs. The paintings are a steady, engrossing read that gradually reveal their history and resolve. My art work on canvas involves the unintended or accidental effect of a mark or gesture drawn over a period of time and many paint layers. This allows the viewer to form their own conclusion based on each individual imagination and past experience.


PROFILE

The work of Michigan artist John McLaughlin (b. 1954) explores the relationship between humans and their environment. Child-like scribbles are combined with highly finished drawing and collage elements to create abstract works that still retain references to natural and man-made objects. McLaughlin is an intuitive artist, allowing his pieces to develop organically in both form and meaning, and his works are a source of constant discovery for both him and the viewer. While entirely self-taught, McLaughlin has affinity with modern artists such as Cy Twombly, known for his canvases strewn with smears and graffiti-like scrawls, and Richard Tuttle, who often has large amounts of blank space around detailed drawings and simple markings. McLaughlin displays a refinement of form, texture, and personal vision that is belied by the gestural freedom and playfulness immediately evident in his pieces.


BIOGRAPHY

Selected Exhibitions and Galleries

2018
“Collective”, LaFontsee Galleries, Grand Rapids, MI
"Eclipse", Gallery Camille,  Detroit, MI
"Grand Opening", M Contemporary Gallery, Ferndale, MI

2017
“Perception & Intention”, LaFontsee Galleries, Grand Rapids, MI
“Toast”, LaFontsee Galleries, Douglas, MI
“Slightly Obsessive”, LaFontsee Galleries, Douglas, MI
“Everyone in the Pool”, LaFontsee Galleries, Douglas, MI
"Freshly Considered", LaFontsee Galleries, Grand Rapids, MI

2016
"sELECTED Works", LaFontsee Galleries, Grand Rapids, Michigan
"Toast", LaFontsee Galleries, Douglas, Michigan
Krege Foundation, Detroit, Michigan
Janice Charach Gallery, West Bloomfield, Michigan
“Paper and Plastic”, solo exhibition, MONA, Detroit, Michigan
“echoes” Galerie Camille, Detroit, Michigan
“Collective Alchemy”, LaFontsee Galleries, Grand Rapids, Michigan

2015
Mixed Media Exhibit, Ann Arbor Art Center, Merit Award
“The Line”, Corners Gallery Ithaca, New York
Art Prize 7, Grand Rapids, Michigan
Echo Art Fair, Buffalo, New York
Solo Show, MONA, Detroit
“Let’s Get Started”, LaFontsee Galleries, Grand Rapids, Michigan
“Slightly Obsessive”, LaFontsee Galleries, Douglas, Michigan
Hirsch Fine Art Santa Fe, New Mexico
Hudson Gallery Toledo, Ohio
BoxHeart Gallery, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

2014
“Slightly Obsessive II”, LaFontsee Galleries, Douglas, Michigan
“Out of the Polar Vortex”, LaFontsee Galleries, Grand Rapids, Michigan
Echo Art Fair, Buffalo New York
“Childs Play”, Danielle Peleg Gallery
Art Prize 6, Cathedral Square, Grand Rapids, Michigan
Hudson Gallery Toledo Oh.  “Double Dozen”

2012   
“25 Year Gala”, LaFontsee Galleries, Grand Rapids, Michigan
“LG-Group”, LaFontsee Galleries, Douglas, Michigan
“Power of Pattern”, LaFontsee Galleries, Douglas, Michigan
“Fresh Squeezed and Locally Grown”, LaFontsee Galleries, Douglas, Michigan
“Act II”, LaFontsee Galleries, Douglas, Michigan

2011    
“Come Out and Play”, LaFontsee Galleries, Grand Rapids, Michigan
“Fall at The Lakeshore”, LaFontsee Galleries, Douglas, Michigan
“City Streets Exhibition”, Lansing, Michigan
“Opening Celebration”, LaFontsee Galleries, Douglas, Michigan
“Michigan Fine Art Competition”, Birmingham, Michigan

2010  
“Our Town Art Exhibit”, Birmingham, Michigan
“Canton Fine Art Exhibition”, Canton, Michigan
Canton Municipal Building, 12 Abstract Paintings
“Michigan Fine Art Competition”  

2009               
“Folk Magic”, Barristers Gallery New Orleans Exhibition, New Orleans, Louisiana
“Michigan Fine Art Exhibition”, 2 works chosen, BBAC, Birmingham, Michigan
“140 Hours Art Auction”, Twitter
“Canton Fine Art Exhibition”, Merit Award, Canton, Michigan
“The Violence of Music”, USpace Gallery Atlanta, Georgia
Our Town Art Exhibit”, The Community House, Birmingham, Michigan

2008  
“Our Town Art Exhibition”, The Community House, Birmingham, Michigan
“National Small Works Painting”, Main Street Gallery, Groton, New York
“Birmingham Bloomfield Holiday Art Show”, BBAC, Birmingham, Michigan
“Our Town Art Exhibit”, The Community House Birmingham, Michigan

2006               
“Our Town Art Exhibit”, Community House, Birmingham, Michigan

2005               
“Canton Fine Art Exhibition”, Honorable Mention, Canton, Michigan
“Our Town Art Exhibit”, Juror Award Prize, Community House, Birmingham, Michigan,  

2004               
“Northville Art Show”, Northville, Michigan
Solo Show, Kerrytown Concert House, Ann Arbor, Michigan

2003              
“Northville Art Show”, Award of Excellence, Northville, Michigan
“Canton Fine Art Exhibition”, Merit Award, Canton, Michigan
“Summit on the Park”, Canton, Michigan

2002   
“Northville Art Show”, Merit Award, Northville, Michigan

2001   
“Northville Art Show”, Award of Excellence, Northville, Michigan
“Canton Fine Art Exhibition”, Canton, Michigan

2000   
“Canton Fine Art Exhibition”, Canton, Michigan
“Northville Art Show”, Northville, Michigan

1999    
“Northville Art Show”, Northville, Michigan

1998    
“Livonia Arts Festival”, Livonia Michigan
“Canton Fine arts Exhibit”, Canton, Michigan
“Northville Art Show”, Northville, Michigan

1997    
“Canton Fine Art Exhibit”, Canton, Michigan
“Northville Art Show”, Northville, Michigan

1996   
“Northville Art Exhibit”, Northville, Michigan
“Canton Fine Art Exhibit”, Canton, Michigan

1995    
“Northville Art Exhibit”, Northville, Michigan

1994               
“Canton Fine Art Exhibit”, Canton, Michigan
“Northville Art Exhibit”, Northville, Michigan

1993   
“Canton Fine Art Exhibit, Canton, Michigan”

1992  
‘Cranbrook College Art Show”, 1st Place, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan

1991  
“Cranbrook College Art Show”, BloomfieldHills, Michigan

1990  
Scarab Club Gallery, Honorable Mention, Detroit, Michigan
“Cranbrook College Art Show”, 1st Place, Bloomfield Hills Michigan

Selected Collections

Mary Idema Pew Library Purchase, Grand Valley State University, Grand Rapids, Michigan
Margarita Papasideri Gallery
Blue Canvas Gallery  
Gallery Guilhem Nave 34000, Montpellier, France
The Drawing Center, New York
Tracey Contemporary Drawing, Leicestershire, England   
Art Collection of Annick and Louis Doucet, Paris, France
Frederic Lux Art Collection, Paris, France         
Peloux-Raynal Art Collection, France, Dominique Dartiers, Outsider Art                
Maddalena Design Studios, Birmingham, Michigan
Artist Musician Sasha Krivtsov, Los Angeles, California

Publications and Reviews

25 Year Book, LaFontsee Galleries
Art of This World: Mary Ann Wakely
Featured in Art Nouveau Magazine
Artist interview at Whopple                                                        
Author Michael Corbin interview

Gallery Representation

Lafontsee Galleries, Grand Rapids, MI
M Contemporary Art,  Ferndale MI
Hudson Gallery, Sylvania OH
BoxHeart Gallery,  Pittsburgh PA
Corners Gallery,  Ithaca NY