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Visual Arts

Durango native shows work at Gallery at 11th Street Station

“Time is an Animal,” a collage on mat board. (Courtesy of Chandler Wigton)
Chandler Wigton’s ‘Loops, Paths, Steps’ on display through July 6.

If there’s one person Durango native Chandler Wigton can credit his art career to, it’s the late Margaret Barge, who taught him art after school (and was a force in Durango’s arts scene).

“She was a huge part of my childhood,” he said. “I kept in touch with her up until she passed away. Then I took a drawing one class in my freshman year of college, and that’s when a major light bulb went off, and I pursued art from there, and really stuck with it.”

If you go

What: Loops, Paths, Steps: An Art Exhibition by Chandler Wigton.

When: Through July 6. Closing reception, 6-8 p.m. July 5.

Where: Gallery at 11th Street Station, 1135 Main Ave.

More information: Visit chandlerwigton.com.

Wigton’s work is currently on display at Gallery at 11th Street Station and will be on exhibit through July 6. The artist grew up in Durango and now lives in Albuquerque, where he teaches in the art department at Central New Mexico Community College and is the building and facilities manager at Harwood Art Center. At CNMCC, he teaches courses in drawing, 2D design, art practices, portraiture, life drawing, art appreciation and more.

His show, “Loops, Paths, Steps” is made up of a mix of pieces, some recent and some a couple of years old. Wigton said it’s also a mixed bag as far as the types of pieces – there’s printmaking, collage, painting, watercolor, drawing and even ’zine making. The work encompasses whatever techniques he finds interesting, he said: “It’s pretty eclectic.”

As for what inspires such an eclectic mix, Wigton said there are things that pique his interest – such as scientific diagrams and old photographs and natural processes – that he uses as a jumping-off point to his pieces.

“A Loop (Color Study),” a collage and watercolor on paper. (Courtesy of Chandler Wigton)

“I’m interested in kind of an abstract language, or kind of inventing my own form of abstraction and just letting the work in the process guide the final images. But I think I’ve always been inspired by scientific diagrams,” he said. “I like to find and collect old magazines and books and things like that. I think that kind of imagery is inspiring. I’m also really inspired by the textures of decay and decomposition – the things that happen naturally out in the world.”

There’s also a musical inspiration to his art, he said.

“I also like to think about my work in relation to music, not that any of the pieces represent specific

“Untitled” is a collage on mat board. (Courtesy of Chandler Wigton)

music, but that there is a freedom and liberation that comes from thinking about visual elements

as parts that can be arranged to create pattern, repetition, harmony and rhythm,” he said in his artist statement. “There is also a mysterious quality to music that is beyond its individual parts and when it hits you, you just feel it.”

And for Wigton, his art offers him an opportunity to try to tap into and explore the weird world we inhabit.

“Steps” is a collage and colored pencil on paper. (Courtesy of Chandler Wigton)

“I think we live in such a mysterious and strange world,” he said. “It’s a way for me to explore things ... it’s a way of knowing in a different way – in a way that isn’t super easily explained in words. I do like having that sense of discovery, or just kind of tapping into the bizarre world that we live in my own way.”


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