Radio City by Valerie Roybal
8"x10" ($24) | 11"x14" ($60) | 16"x20" ($240) | 24"x30" ($1200) | 30"x40" ($2400)
Get a good look at Valerie Roybal’s Radio City. The Albuquerque-based artist moonlights as a master scavenger, amassing the materials for her collages by sifting through everything from vintage postcards and castoff printed matter, to abandoned textiles and anonymous found objects. Whether her focus favors a particular type of material or a mix of many, Roybal approaches these disparate elements with a keen awareness of invisible or elusive connections, and an imaginative grasp of conceptual bridges yet to be built.
In the case of Radio City’s enigmatic striped façade, we’re looking mostly at cuts from the covers of old sheet music—one of Roybal’s favorite ingredients to work with. As with all of the artist’s collage work, the process of assembling, organizing and arranging each element into a cohesive whole is a sort of alchemy. Structure and musicality emerge as she orchestrates. Splintered slices of paper take on new meaning in their togetherness. This print pays homage to both the music book and the making of music itself. (And we’re probably missing something!)
Radio City is an exercise in balance, alternating between bright notes of colors like lime green and candy apple red, and the leveling presence of ecru pages. Roybal also switches between illegible slivers of script and serif text, and stripes of solid color. This creates breathing room, rests in her composition. Rhythm reveals itself in her use of opposites—hard and soft, vibrant and neutral, form and fluidity. The eye moves through this edition like it’s reading a piece of music.
Pondering Radio City, you'll probably tune into one of the defining qualities of all of Roybal’s 20x200 editions: harmony. And nowadays that’s precisely what we’re going for in our own art collections. Who couldn’t use a li'l harmony in their life?
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