The geometric surfaces of the paintings by Gary Paterson are derived from the decorative concrete blocks used in Midcentury architecture. Palm Springs homes from this era often include a “brise soleil” – outdoor living space within the privacy of a wall, created to separate the house from street noise and traffic. These walls have geometric-shaped holes that allow air movement. The patterns of the individual blocks fit together and create larger patterns.

Paterson’s images are constructed in the same way these walls were built – block upon cinder block. Each block’s shape is the same shape as the canvas. This repetition of shape in varying scales creates interesting rhythm and movement that would not be anticipated within a geometric grid.

The images are seen “through” these patterns, with the different layers being created by careful control of color values (light-to-dark). When the pattern of the painted blocks coincides with the block pattern of the actual wall being depicted, the viewer sees – vaguely – through the holes, as is the case with the actual walls, and the pattern seems flat, fastened to the surface. This creates another visual focus.
Mr. Paterson has been a Palm Springs resident since 2003. He worked for the Palm Springs Art Museum for five years as the Artists Council Coordinator. He is represented by Local Color Gallery, 220 E. Arenas Road, Palm Springs.

His website is