Paintings by Leslie Kenneth Price - Humboldt State Now

Paintings by Leslie Kenneth Price

Humboldt State University’s First Street Gallery in Old Town, Eureka is honored to present Paintings by Leslie Kenneth Price, a collection of artist Leslie Price’s recent work from his Veil series. The exhibit will run from Oct. 1 through Nov. 6.

Leslie Kenneth Price, Just Breathing, 2011. Acrylic on panel, 48 x 44 inches.

A retired Humboldt State University painting professor, Leslie Kenneth Price uses acrylic paint on birch panels to create layers and permeable planes of color, achieving a sense of space, balance, and imbalance. Price’s work appears effortless and spontaneous, but is a premeditated, and carefully planned out map of his inner thoughts.

Price’s work is deeply influenced by Buddhism and by his observations that the impermanence of nature is a metaphor for life. Zen meditation, which Price practices, is apparent in the conceptual content of his works. The subjects he uses are inspired by memories of objects in his daily observations. The shapes dance around the canvas, alluding to a sense of balance and imbalance, creating motion in the still painting. The series responds to a rhythmic composition, inspired in part by his relationship with Jazz and its improvisational qualities.

His paintings respond to living in the moment, the microscopic details of life that you can’t necessarily see, but can sense. The importance of observation and being in the moment is apparent in Price’s work. As he explains, “The trees, they’re still but I know there’s a vitality happening at the same time. There’s life happening. That makes sense to me as a metaphor for life. Wherever we look, there’s this vitality, a life force within us that’s active until we’re dead, but it’s something that’s going on—that you can’t see, but you sense it.”

Viewers will be able to sense the meditative qualities in his paintings and react in their own way to his work. As a former pupil of Price’s reflects, he sees in Price’s artwork “the release of attachment to a permanent reality, being in the moment while letting go of that moment.”

While the series of paintings are initially visually striking, time is necessary to appreciate the depth, meaning, and allusion of movement unique to each painting.

A reception for the artist will be held on Saturday, October 1st from 6-9 p.m. during Eureka’s monthly Arts Alive event. Celebrating its fourteenth year of service to HSU students and to the North Coast community, Humboldt State University First Street Gallery is open Tuesday through Sunday from 12 to 5 p.m. and is located at 422 First Street, Eureka, California. Admission is free. Those planning group tours are encouraged to call ahead. For more information call 707-443-6363 or visit the gallery’s website at