The Layerist's Aesthetic- A discussion & exhibit at the Pacific Grove Art Center (PGAC)

At the Pacific Grove Art Center, on September 6, 2008, members of The Society of Layerists in Multi-Media (SLMM), California-Hawaii Chapter conducted an educational session for artists in the Monterey area to introduce the Society’s concepts, answer questions, and offer membership to any artists interested in joining this educational organization. The event was free and open to the public. The quote below was taken from the SLMM website:

The purpose of SLMM is to offer creative artists a holistic way to relate to one another, as differentiated from the academic structure of professional artists’ associations based on a single medium, such as watercolor, pastel or sculpture. The network we have built is meant to act as a leavening in a society whose values are based on a system of separation through competition, careerism, and hierarchy. SLMM is a society of equals designed to encourage creative expression and dynamic growth.

The discussion coincided with the opening of "Interactions", which displays the curated works of the members of SLMM-California-Hawaii chapter at the Pacific Grove Art Center. It was a wonderful opening night and the next day's lecture/discussion was quite informative. Several artists from the SLMM group gave a brief presentation about their work in the show and how it relates to the Layerist philosophy.

What is the layerist philosphy? The quote below was taken from the SLMM website:

Layering is not a label for a particular style or medium. Layerists are diverse in their approach to making art, but they make similar references to many overlapping disciplines, such as: the sciences, philosophy, and metaphysics. Often the Layerist's intention is to express a metaphysical content, a sense that something “other” than the visible inhabits the work. Therefore we say that it is not the technique that distinguishes a Layered work of art so much as the mind of the artist who makes the art.

As I made my way through the exhibit at the PG Art Center and listened to some of the SLMM members speak about their work, a few pieces of art stood out to me. Below are some of those images. I think they give a good example of the range and diversity among the Layerist in this group.

"Stillness", Clayprint-Monotype on clay/canvas by Martha Castillo.

"Hang 'em 27", Acrylic on Canvas, Jane Peterman

"Monet Bouquet", Acrylic & Gel, Barbara Jean

"California", Acrylic/Collage/Papers, Ara Leites

To learn more about The Society of Layerists in Multi-Media (SLMM), visit their website:

The "Interactions" exhibit will be on display at the Pacific Grove Art Center until October 16, 2008.


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