July 11-August 2nd, 2020
Opening Reception Saturday, July 11, 2020 8-11p
Exhibition Video Walkthrough
La Luz de Jesus Gallery is pleased to present California Mythos, an exhibition by E.E. Kono on view from July 11-August 2nd, 2020. Like the translucent veils of color used to create E. E. Kono’s jewel-toned egg tempera paintings, layers of mythology both form and reveal the world. Every place, thing, and individual is the sum of narratives. Kono’s current body of work is inspired by 16th c. Portraiture, local maritime history, and the diverse traditions that have influenced Southern California. Her whimsical paintings of iconic creatures combine symbolism and stories from East and West, blending modern and mystic, to create imagery that is uniquely SoCal.Named after a fictional Arabic island in a popular 16th c. Spanish novel, California has always been at the crossroads of East and West. For over 400 years, from Spanish galleons to corporate freighters, ships have carried treasures to SoCal’s shore. Alongside silks, spices, and ceramics, ships’ holds have transported mystic tales from faraway lands. Over time these mythologies converged, and their deities settled in the deep offshore canyons of Santa Monica Bay, subtly influencing California’s culture, waiting for the day they would rise and be seen.
E.E. Kono is an artist based in Los Angeles. Her paintings are distilled narratives inspired by years of travel and a background in Art History. Kono’s work is influenced by the transition from Mysticism to Humanism in early Renaissance art, as well as by 20th-century surrealists such as Leanora Carrington. Kono practices the old master technique of egg tempera painting. Each color is created on the palette by combining natural powdered pigments and organic egg yolk binder. The paint is applied to traditional gesso panels in a process that requires hundreds of semi-translucent layers. Kono is also an award-winning author/illustrator who has published over a dozen picture books. Her clientele includes top trade publishers and national magazines. She has a BA in Art History from the University of Iowa and studied at the University of Hull in England. Kono was raised in Dubuque, Iowa, and has traveled the world. Her experiences include backpacking through rural Turkey, dealing blackjack on the Mississippi, waiting tables in NY, kayaking with whales, and racing sailboats. She currently lives in Southern California with her husband, daughter, and two dogs.
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