Sean Healy’s Extroverts is his first Portland show in several years. Healy’s business, doing commissioned works with his friend, the artist Joe Thurston, has brought several large site-specific installations to life in recent years.
But a collection of more personal work, on view through August at Elizabeth Leach Gallery, finds Healy thinking about the archetypes of men in his childhood and beyond. Healy made large expanses formed by hundreds of cigarette filters, and slathered them with glittering enamels in the colors evoking ‘70s muscle cars.
“I think it’s all tied into this concept of masculinity - this hard veneer when you don’t show that something’s bothering you, but really, day-to-day stresses in life, you’re carrying that around.
Witty depictions of snaggle-toothed grins share wall-space with enormous, elegant studies of animal horns.
Healy talked to April about the show, his techniques, and his ongoing fascination with that most self-destructive and inescapably masculine accessory, the cigarette.
Healy will give a free talk on the show June 28th at 11AM.