INDIO, CA.- Phillip K Smith III launched PORTALS 2016, his most recent large-scale art installation at the Coachel-la Music and Arts Festival in Indio California on Friday, April 15, 2016. The light-based artwork will be on view for festival attendees through April 25th.
In contrast to his wildly successful REFLECTION FIELD for Coachella 2014 and instead of embracing the vertically monumental, the artist took inspiration from what would be expected at an interna-tional contemporary art exhibition like The Venice Biennale or documenta, producing a fully immer-sive environment.
PORTALS 2016, is a pavilion of light that offers multiple perceptual experiences. As you approach the 85-foot architectural structure, hundreds of highly polished stainless steel columns circumnavi-gate the single story construction. These mirrored finish bars reflect and refract the surrounding envi-ronment. Much like his acclaimed temporary project LUCID STEAD 2013 that was installed in Joshua Tree, California, the mirage-like exterior renders viewers unaware of what is immediately in front of them and what is visually collaged from the horizon behind them. Upon entering, you are envel-oped in pulsating and shifting color, at times appearing synchronized and at other moments each light element, almost chaotically, detached from the next. The most intimate experience is standing in front of an individual Portal. Each of the eight 6 in diameter sculptures travels through a me-ticulously orchestrated journey of changing hues designed to affect the pace of experience. Unlike his earlier Lightworks, where light emanates from within the objects, the new PORTALS series splays color across pure white surfacesblending and merging with no easily discernible source of illumi-nation. Circular planes seem to hover without suspension while edges of the massive discs, at times, take on an ostensible transparency blending seamlessly into the wall behind them.
In the fall of 2016, Phillip K Smith III will have a solo exhibition at the Laguna Art Museum and will present a large scale temporary installation on Main Beach in Laguna Beach, CA. He has also been invited to participate in Desert X 2017, an international, contemporary art exhibition that will focus attention on and create conversation about environmental, social, and cultural conditions of the 21st century. Phillip K Smith III exhibits his works with Royale Projects : Contemporary Art in Los Angeles and Palm Desert
Phillip K. Smith III received his Bachelor of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Architecture at the Rhode Island School of Design. From his Palm Desert, CA studio, he creates light-based work that draws upon ideas of space, form, color, light + shadow, environment, and change. Building upon the foundation of work established by artists such as Turrell, Ir-win, Brancusi, Nolan, and others, Smith continually distills his concepts to create intensely physical, seemingly ephemeral, and highly meditative works that affect perception, breath, and pace of experience. Incorporating a sense of change in his work through shifting color or the movement of the sun, Smith challenges us to slow down and align ourselves with his work so that we can better see and hear the beauty that is in front of us.
Featured in hundreds of online and print publications, Smith has been featured in the 2008 annual review in Art in America, his work, Inhale/Exhale, is included on the cover and interior of Chris Van Ueffelens book, 500 x Art In Public and his project Lucid Stead is included Henry M. Sayres A World of Art, the go-to textbook for college level art his-tory courses. In 2010, he was the Artist-in-Residence at the Palm Springs Art Museum and in the Spring of 2015 participated in the Artist Residency Program at Dartmouth College, whose lineage includes some of the most innovative artists of the last century, including Robert Rauschenberg, Frank Stella and Donald Judd. Included in the exhibi-tion, Smooth Operations: Substance and Surface in Southern California Art, Smiths work was exhibited alongside artists such as Peter Alexander, Larry Bell, DeWain Valen-tine, and Craig Kauffman at the Museum of Art and History in Lancaster CA. Subse-quently, he was offered a solo exhibition at that same institution. In October 2013, he launched Lucid Stead in Joshua Tree CA, which became an international phenome-non receiving tremendous international attention. Shortly thereafter, Los Angeles Times named Smith as one of the three "Faces to Watch in Art 2014". In April of 2014, Smith launched Reflection Field, a colossal light installation that once again landed him in the Los Angeles Times with a full-page article about the installation, Smith, and his practice. He has since been commissioned to create a permanent, light-based installa-tion for the City of West Hollywood and the City of Bellevue, WA. In the Spring of 2015, Smith presented Portals, an 85 diameter pavilion for light at the Coachella Music and Arts Festival. In the Fall of 2015, Smith will have a solo exhibition at the Laguna Art Mu-seum and will present a large scale temporary installation on Main Beach in Laguna Beach, CA.