The force and unrelenting urgency of the sea is the inspiration for Roger Preston’s first solo show at the Kim Foster Gallery in Chelsea, titled “Portals and Tempests.”
The multifaceted nature of the ocean with its ability to calm the soul and yet devastate entire land masses is both fascinating and humbling. Its beauty and strength are simultaneously represented in these oil/mixed media works on aluminum that bring together the conflicting hard surface of the metal with the lush impressionistic images of water and sky. The panel shapes reference history in the silhouettes of shields, looking glass frames or ideas about containment, while also creating windows or portals to another place or state of mind as they present a passage of escape, yet offer the threat of submergence and suffocation with the freedom they promise.
In the show, as well, are pure abstractions, also in metal, that collide with each other in a dramatic battle of supremacy – ships battling at sea, barnacles attaching themselves in parasitic fashion, suns and moons ablaze.
A dedicated artist from an early age, Roger Preston earned a BFA Degree Cum Laude from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond. Studies in Fine Arts and Fashion Design led to a career in retail window display for such elite companies as Tiffany & Co. and HERMES of PARIS, and most recently Saks Fifth Avenue. In this venue, Preston has been able to express his vision in painting, sculpture, and photography, creating other worlds within the confines of a window frame.
Public recognition of his art, often used as backdrops for the products displayed, encouraged him to present his work for its own merit, as fine art. Working in the world of non-representational art has presented new possibilities and fresh insight. He now approaches his work without classification, often blurring the line between the real and the abstract.
2012 – Present SAKS FIFTH AVENUE, Managing Director of Visual – New York
2007-2012 BARNEYS NEW YORK, Opened flagship store, environment and display, Las Vegas
2005-2007 NEIMAN MARCUS, display and floral designer, Las Vegas
1992-2005 HERMES of PARIS, display windows for seven locations, NY, DC, CT, PA, GA, MA
1992-1998 TIFFANY & CO., window concepts in four locations, DC, PA
1989-1993 JOS. A BANK CLOTHIERS, interior and window display, DC
1988-1995 BLOOMINGDALES, holiday decorations in numerous locations, VA, MD
1986-1988 ESPRIT DE CORP, regional visual manager four state region, DC, MD, VA, SC
1984-1986 RALEIGH’S DEPARTMENT STORES, visual manager, DC, VA