Daniel J. Glendening
In a Dream We Named the Dead
November 26, 2022–January 8, 2023
Opening reception: Sunday, December 4, 1–3pm
Premiere Jr. is delighted to present a new billboard by Northern California artist Daniel J. Glendening. For our 15th exhibition (!), Daniel has created a multilayered image: small orange and red nasturtium flowers sitting on top of a cyanotype, where silhouettes of hands and nasturtium vines curl across blue fabric.
Over the last few years, Daniel’s practice has mainly focused on making paintings of flowers picked from his garden; painted quickly, the images verge on collapse. But he has also been experimenting with dense drawings of text and imagery and cyanotype still lifes. In these works, he builds up the compositions slowly and methodically in a stream-of-consciousness process. One image continues to surface: an outstretched hand with long fingers tipped by claws. To him, these witch or goblin fingers — beckoning, groping or cradling a dripping egg — have become a representation of death.
“How do we begin to process three years of ongoing death and trauma, swept under the rug?” he asks. “Every still-life is about death, and maybe every painting.”
Marking this moment of collective, unacknowledged grief — for the people we have lost, for a changed society, for failures of leadership, for missed opportunities to reimagine the world — Daniel has created an image of hands reaching from beyond the veil, punctuated by colorful signals of life and love.
Against this backdrop, In a Dream We Named the Dead hopefully gestures at how we might yet collectively care for one another.
Daniel J. Glendening is an artist and arts worker living in Northern California on Southern Pomo land. He has exhibited internationally, has published several essays, artist's books, and one novel, and is a founding member of the artist-led paranormal research team GWC, Investigators. Past work has included accumulations of embodied objects, scouring the night skies for UFOs, speaking to ghosts in Eastern Oregon, and broadcasting messages to outer space.