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Artist brings L.A. abstract flavor to Tall Wall

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by Rebecca Cooper
Staff Writer

Kyle Kilty’s artwork is hard to miss when you walk into the Arts and Communication Building.

Kilty, an abstract artist, was transplanted to Los Angeles by way of Reno, Nev., and Skowhegan, Maine. Kilty is the third artist to be featured on the University of La Verne’s Tall Wall Space that spans two stories, and features the work of young and emerging artists.

“I like having my paintings exhibited for public viewing,” said Kilty, 26. “One of my teachers in college told me to never get too attached to my paintings, because if you get attached to a painting, that’s one you should display because you become attached for a reason.”

“The Tall Wall Space really gives us a chance to experience art in a different way,” said Dion Johnson, art studio manager and director of the Tall Wall Space. “The way the building was designed allows the art there to really engage the architecture.”

Johnson considered many artists before choosing Kilty, who received his bachelor’s from the University of Nevada, Reno. After graduate school, at the Claremont Graduate University, he attended the prestigious Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture.

“He is a really hot, young painter, so I thought his work would be perfect for our space,” Johnson said. “The paintings I chose to display are really appropriate, and work well where they’re displayed.”

Six of Kilty’s paintings were chosen for exhibition on the Tall Wall Space. All are contemporary abstracts based on portraiture.

“I don’t deal with people when I do portraiture, because I don’t feel it tells who the person being portrayed really is,” Kilty said. “The most important parts are the surroundings and what the person wears, because that’s what really tells you a lot.”

The first two large paintings are a complimentary green and red pair titled “Fashionable Roonks.”

“It is an adeptic abstract painting about fitting into the surroundings, because that is what fashion is really about,” Kilty said.

The next two large paintings are both painted in the digital colors red, blue and green. One of the two, titled “Berclau,” features an abstract object in the digital colors, layered over brown circles. The other, titled “Soma,” is the first in a series Kilty painted featuring the digital colors in squares.

The other three paintings are small abstracts that tell their own story. The first untitled piece was used as a study for a larger painting. The second, titled “YTS,” is a brown and yellow-orange dealing with covering up an object. The third painting, “Karass,” is blue and pink with a fabric feel; it is one of Kilty’s first paintings.

Kilty also has artwork exhibited at Inmo Gallery in Chinatown, at group shows in Claremont and through the Creative Artists Association.

“I guess I always feel a bit of accomplishment whenever my paintings are exhibited,” Kilty said. “I do paint for myself, but I also paint to tell a story and to give to the public.”

Kilty’s paintings will be on the Tall Wall Space until Jan. 3, 2003.

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