VSF is pleased to present This must be the place, an exhibition of ten oil paintings by Chicago- based artist Will Gabaldón, the artist’s first solo exhibition with the gallery. This group of small, visionary paintings depict specific pastoral landscapes and environments the artist has observed over time and rendered from memory. Through painterly intervention, Gabaldón’s images become both representations of real places and manifestations of what the artist refers to as “atmospheres left in memory”. The grouping of paintings featured conjure images of places both real and imagined, utilizing concise brushwork, humble palettes, and the artist's keen sense of memory.
The exhibition takes its title from the 1983 song by The Talking Heads This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody), a song whose opening lines call to memories and longings of the singer's home.
“Home is where I want to be
Pick me up and turn me around”
The song's lyrics strike a hopeful tone but also speak to a place that is imagined or unknown to the singer. The artist's choice to title the exhibition after the track speaks directly to his belief that his paintings are worlds that can only be realized through the medium of painting. For Gabaldón, it is only in painting that the elements of color, caricature, touch, and abstraction can be incorporated into a fluid shorthand that directly interprets appearance and experience.
This exhibition takes place in and Milk, a project space within Various Small Fires in Los Angeles.
Will Gabaldón (b. 1978 Belen, New Mexico, lives and works in Chicago) received his B.F.A. in painting from the University of New Mexico and his M.F.A. from the University of Pennsylvania. Before moving to Chicago, he lived and worked in Brooklyn. While living in NYC he was a painting assistant for Jeff Koons, a founding member of the artist-run exhibition space TSA Gallery and was actively exhibiting work in many group exhibitions in New York. He currently lives and paints in Chicago, IL with his wife and two daughters. Recent exhibitions include group exhibitions with Acerman Clarke at NADA Miami, 2021, and the exhibition Polycephaly at Sanitary Tortilla Factory in Albuquerque New Mexico, 2020.