[Old/New] Psychedelic Providence highlights current manifestations of the psychedelic in the productions of artists living and working in Providence, Rhode Island today. Some iterations involve the typical combination of kaleidoscopic color, intricate rendering and sharply delineated layouts. Still abound are references to Op Art, craft, pop, counterculture and sci-fi ambience. Trippy landscapes allude to the prevalence of the city’s motley mix of Victorian tradition and scenery. Un-stereotypical references to drugs and party culture pop up every once in a while, too. But graphic form and streamlined composition come together in ways they have not before. There is less visual overload, fewer references to collected display and cultural otherness, and more sensitivity towards repetition. The artists in this exhibition restrain the wildest of ways into compact arrangements. They organize dreamy surreal-ness into tight units and orderly editions, suggesting that the psychedelic, while inspirationally boundless, needs some limits… even in psychedelic Providence.
Heather Leigh McPherson
Nadia Haji Omar