Haitian-born, Connecticut-raised, modern artist Guy Stanley Philoche immigrated to Connecticut when he was three. As the middle child of three boys and coming from a family of sports enthusiasts whose passion he didn’t share, Philoche turned to art as his calling. While remaining close to his Haitian Roots, Philoche was the only son to buck his culture’s tradition of the entire family living together and struck out on his own – first attending Paier College of Art and then Yale. He now lives in New York City.
For the past 15 years, Guy Stanley Philoche has been attracting international attention with his work and his impressive roster of solo shows. As an artist, Guy’s palette is strong and sophisticated. His layering technique has created a body of paintings so richly textured that one can hardly hold back from reaching out and touching the canvas. In fact, it is the artist’s intent and wish that the viewer will follow their desire to reach out and feel the different textures of his canvases. His work is for the viewer’s pleasure, to be fully enjoyed from a tactile standpoint, and he has varnished the canvases for exactly that reason.
In “Come Fly With Me,” Philoche’s newest series, the artist’s lush surfaces were inspired by the buildup of city walls, thick with traces of wheatpasted posters, advertisements, tagging and graffiti. Paper airplanes made from collaged reproductions of dollars and euros come zipping through the frames, leaving their swirling trails behind them in great looping gestures. From the glib use of $100 bills for some of the airplanes, to smaller denominations folded into the form of butterflies that momentarily alight on round canvases, Philoche’s folded bills draw attention to currency’s status as an abstract sign, with no inherent material value once detached from its system of circulation.
In the spirit of nostalgia, Philoche created his second body of work “Game Series” featuring New York painter Guy Stanley Philoche’s “Game Series” is inspired by joyful childhood memories with his family. As Guy explains “Every Sunday we gathered for dinner.” Afterwards, the board games came out. “When playing monopoly there were many ‘side deals’, exchange of monies and ideas, these were fun, bonding times.”
In the “Game Series” the canvases are made to look worn, well used, right down to teeth marks. To achieve this look Guy uses a distressed color palette and textures the canvases with dents, cracks and tears. The goal is to evoke nostalgia, warm memories of shared times with Guy’s friends and family.