Lance De Los Reyes: Gifts of Telepathy

Lance De Los Reyes: Gifts of Telepathy

Lance De Los Reyes: Gifts of Telepathy
Nov 2022 – January 2023
Vito Schnabel Gallery
The Old Santa Monica Post Office
1248 5th Street
Santa Monica, CA 90401

Gifts of Telepathy is the first solo presentation of Lance De Los Reyes’s work in Los Angeles. On view at Vito Schnabel Gallery through January 2023, the exhibition will feature more than two dozen paintings and sculptures made by the late artist and poet between 2012 and his death in 2021.

Across the years of his practice, Lance De Los Reyes evolved from a noted street artist recognized by the tagged presence of his alter ego, RAMBO, into a dedicated studio painter and sculptor, developing a striking visual language dominated by symbols and pictographs conceived to map his consciousness.

Lance De Los Reyes, Guardian Council VIII, 2021;
Lance De Los Reyes, Guardian Council VIII, 2021; Acrylic on canvas,
96 x 84 inches (243.8 x 213.4 cm); © The Estate of Lance De Los Reyes; Photo by
Argenis Apolinario; Courtesy the artist and Vito Schnabel Gallery

Through his emphatic, large-scale works, De Los Reyes sought to share his memories of the past and the present, and to project the possibilities he imagined in our future ahead. His abstract images on canvas and paper express a vision of the spiritual and natural worlds entwined, sacred and profane in constant oscillation, exerting a palpable creative force field. The artist’s wife Anna De Los Reyes writes: “Lance was able to brilliantly read every day like a book of divinity. Seeing the story of our souls embedded in the symbolism of nature, he drew upon these vortices of conscious energy to extract and build from what life provides.”

Lance De Los Reyes, Untitled  2020; 66 1/2 x 34 5/8 x 4 inches
(168.9 x 88 x 10.2 cm); © The Estate of Lance De Los Reyes; Photo by Argenis Apolinario; Courtesy the artist and Vito Schnabel Gallery

In 2020, while spending time with his mentor, the artist Donald Baechler, in upstate New York, De Los Reyes created a series of shield sculptures that materialize his beliefs. A selection of these will be exhibited for the first time in the exhibition at the Old Santa Monica Post Office. Anna De Los Reyes explains that the sculptures were “intended to be vessels that protect a sacred truth…Lance felt that when people neglect the holy transmissions that guide us, we must find a way to look deeper into our shadows, in order to heal.

This was an intensely personal journey for Lance. He never moved in fear as he stepped into ceremony. Seeing how the world holds us, and we in turn hold the world, he offered these shields as a gift. In these sculptures, primary colors and organic shapes represent the chemicals of his craft in alliance with the natural world. White being the salt of the earth; red expressing the element of sulfur, our lifeblood, and fire; blue being the spirit and the influence of water; black, a messenger of the mystery and sorrow; yellow to channel the glory of the sun; and green to constitute resurrection. Lance purposely cast spells to transmute the base metals of lower man into spiritual gold, creating the groundwork of his boundless vision.”

De Los Reyes’ shield sculptures also derive inspiration from the concave shaped canvases of Ron Gorchov, of whom he was an ardent admirer. De Los Reyes experimented with Gorchov’s signature ‘saddle’ form in a series of paintings from 2016, and examples will be on view in this exhibition.

In his last body of work, completed in early 2021, De Los Reyes began exploring more distinctively animal subjects, including otherworldly creatures peeking through and superimposed upon monumentally-sized masks. Abstract shapes and figures collide in these colorful, energetic, totemic works, signalizing a direction that De Los Reyes may have taken.

©2022 Lance De Los Reyes, Argenis Apolinario, Vito Schnabel Gallery