The recent work of Andrew Lyles shows us a process one of a remarkably focused investigation of color and form. This process starts with an exploration of the possibilities with painting. Andrew works to find relationships within a surface that have meaning for him as a reference to the world as he sees it. These surfaces are rich and thick, heavily worked an attempt to find an organization within the confines of a rectangle (sort of) that resonates. These surfaces indicate a painters struggle to resolve the conditions of the work within the constraints of this traditional focus. But he cant. These surfaces become part of the world that he is responding to, and the process continues.
Andrew has stated: It is like picking out your favorite marbles, then throwing them up in the air and seeing how they land. The relationships between the various marbles catch his attention. In his process, he focuses first on what is in front of him, and then sets it aside. As these parts accrue, the relationships between them start to assert themselves. Found parts that find their way into his studio as elements from the world he sees join in the conversation. Constructed wood forms, built first as a singular exploration, become frameworks for the other parts. The ultimate work becomes a conversation between this assortment of personal histories, observations and objects, and they often change dramatically with a shift in context.
Andrews studio process is diverse it occurs in his painting studio, the wood shop, cycling around Kansas City on his bike, and ultimately in the space where the work will reside. The resolutions that he arrives at can occur within a single painting, drawing or construction, but most often they occur as a response to a particular time and place. They are fluid and conversational not a declaration of a final statement, but rather an invitation for the viewer to join in the conversation. -James Woodfill