Patrick Alston is an abstract painter whose practice focuses on gesture and materiality. Though abstract, Alston‘s work forms a reflection on socio-politics, identity, language and the psychology of color. His re-contextualized subjects, and rich and complex compositions are expressed through gestural mark making and the combination of highly diverse material.
In his work, the artist highly draws on the relation between image and language. The selection of his titles plays a crucial role within the artist’s process. Comparing the abstraction of painting to Black English Vernacular as a form of language abstraction, Alston investigates different forms of understanding and the feeling of not – being - understood. His visual language relates to traditional New York graffiti culture and generates a medium to project the unwritten aesthetic of the urban landscape. Very aware of traditional art history, Alston refers to Phillip Guston, Raymond Saunders, Cy Twombly, and Mark Bradford as guiding artist figures.
The artist employs highly different materials including oil, acrylic and spray paint, raisin, canvas, fabric and/or plastic. His technique forms a weaving together with different textures generating a fine interplay between tension and harmony, challenging the viewer to look (more) carefully.
„Painting, specifically abstraction, can express emotions and feelings inexpressible by words or iconography. It is a language unto itself. A way in which I can express aspects of myself only understood by my core inner being.“
Patrick Alston was born in 1991 in New York, NY, US. He grew up in the South Bronx and attended Wabash College in Crawfordsville, IN, studying Art and Psychology. He has had various solo and group exhibitions in New York and the US. Patrick Alston lives and works in New York.