William Betts

 

I use complex industrial processes to create paintings that reflect the possibilities for an analog medium in a digital age. I use highly modified linear motion technology and my own proprietary software, laser engravers, and other computer controlled devices to apply and manipulate paint. My work is typically based on photographic material mediated through technology and process. I use images as data sets to be examined, sampled, re-contextualized, manipulated and represented. I have always been less interested in content and more concerned with the structural and social aspects of the image. My practice is non-linear and I work on several bodies of work and techniques concurrently. They inform each other and also help clarify each other.

We live in a society where there is a continuing erosion of privacy. We move

through spaces with the illusion that are most private conversations and our most intimate contacts and actions are private. On the web, we willingly turn over our most intimate secrets to the world’s largest corporations assuming they will protect us. The ubiquity of surveillance and photography makes me an unwitting character actor in thousands and thousands of CCTV videos and holiday photographs as I traverse a city square or walk through a park. These mediations create a new visual vocabulary I explore in my work. I was originally inspired by the writings of Jeremy Bentham on the Panopticon and Michel Foucault in his work Discipline & Punish. My paintings seek to create dialog and explore the sociological and philosophical implications of these new applied technologies in contemporary society.

Investigations into a time series and the space between what happens and an

investigation into the spaces where there is nothing happening. A beach – where random people gather. A pool where a couple interacts. Ambiguous, Anonymous, Random; the exact opposite of the historical imperative of painting.

In my work I look for the ideal balance between recognition and ambiguity allowing viewers to draw on their own experiences, imagination, and anxieties.

 

 

EDUCATION

 

1991    Arizona State University, Bachelor of Arts, Studio Art - Cum Laude

 

SELECTED SOLO EXHIBITIONS

 

2017   Holly Johnson Gallery, Dallas

2016   Margaret Thatcher Projects, New York

2015   Kostuik Gallery, Vancouver, BC

2012   Plus Gallery, Denver, CO Robert McClain Gallery, Houston, TX

2011   Richard Levy Gallery, Albuquerque, NM

2010   Devin Borden Hiram Butler Gallery

            Houston, TX Kostuik Gallery, Vancouver, BC

            Margaret Thatcher Projects, New York Holly Johnson Gallery, Dallas

2009   Richard Levy Gallery, Albuquerque, NM

2008   Kostuik Gallery, Vancouver, BC

            Devin Borden Hiram Butler Gallery, Houston, TX

            Peter Miller Gallery, Chicago, IL

2007   Margaret Thatcher Projects, New York, NY

            Devin Borden Hiram Butler Gallery, Houston, TX

            Richard Levy Gallery, Albuquerque, NM

2006   Anne Reed Gallery, Sun Valley, ID

            Peter Miller Gallery, Chicago, IL

2005   Bentley Projects, Phoenix, AZ

            Texas State University, San Marcos, TX

            Plus Gallery, Denver, CO

            Gallery deSoto, Los Angeles, CA

            Holly Johnson Gallery, Dallas, TX

            Thomas Werner Gallery, New York, NY

2004   Poissant O’Neil Gallery, Houston, TX

 

 

SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS

 

2017    Rarity Gallery, Mykonos

2017    Painted Landscapes: Contemporary Views, Heritage Museums&Gardens

             Sandwich, MA 

2015    Brave New World, DOX Centre for Contemporary Art, Praha, Czech Republic

2013    Logical Expressions and Variations, Margaret Thatcher Projects, New York

2012    Rasterfahndung (Tracing the Grid), Kunstmuseum Stuttgart 
             Just Not Yet: Dodging the Vacuum of Meaning, Landmark Gallery, Texas Tech                  University

2011    SUBstainability, Texas State University, San Marcos, TX

2010    This is not a photo show, Blue Star Contemporary Art Center, San Antonio

             appropriate manipulate duplicate, Gallery Joe, Philadelphia, PA

2009    Landscape Affected, University of Dallas, Haggerty Gallery, Irving, TX

2008    Pixilated, Winston Wachter Fine Art, New York, NY 

             Invisible Omniscience: Seeing and the Seen, Baltimore Art Place

             New American Talent 23, Arthouse, Austin, TX

             Re-mix, Margaret Thatcher Projects, New York, NY

             Group Show, Trinity University, San Antonio, Steven Lam, Curator

             Houston Area Show, Blaffer Gallery, University of Houston, Claudia Schmukli,                Curator

             Under Surveillance, John Michael Kohler Art Center, Sheboygan, WI

             Group Show, Spur Projects, Portola Valley, CA

             Assistance League Celebrates Texas Art 2008. Dr. Kevin Salatino, LACMA Juror

2007    Collectors Gallery, Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY

             Chill: Summer Group Show, Margaret Thatcher Projects, New York

             B&W, Devin Borden Hiram Butler Gallery, Houston, TX

             Texas Biennial, Austin, TX

             Fab Ab, Salt Lake City Art Center

2006    Watch it! Television’s Influence in Art. State University of New York, Stony                         Brook, NY

             Baroque Visions and Urban Verities: Seven Houston Painters, Blue Star, San                    Antonio,

             curated by Terrie Sultan and Chris French

             SUPERvision, Foster Gallery, University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire

             Texas Paint, Part Two: Abstraction, Arlington Museum of Art, curated by Anne                Allen

             Biennial Southwest, Albuquerque Museum, Albuquerque NM, Dr. Neal                            Benezra, Director of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art Juror and                          Curator OPENDraw, OPENSOURCE Art, Champaign, IL

2006    Works on Paper National Competition, Long Beach, New Jersey,
             Juror: CarterFoster,

             Drawing Curator Whitney Museum of American Art

             5 Angles on Abstraction, Addison Arts, Santa Fe Ripped from the Pages, Gallery              125, CACHH, Houston, Texas

             Blurring the Line, University of Texas San Antonio, Julie Shipp Curator

             Assistance League of Houston Celebrates Texas Art, Houston, Jeffrey D. Grove,               Curator of Contemporary Art, High Museum of Art Atlanta Juror

2005    New Texas Painting, Diverseworks, Houston

             Clothesline Exhibition, the Hospital, Covent Garden, London

             Three Landscape Painters, Morgan Lehman Gallery, Lakeville, Connecticut

             Incremental Disruption, NAO Gallery, Boston

             20 th Annual International Exhibition, University of Texas, Tyler, Texas

             Texas Biennial, Austin, Texas

             Assistance League of Houston Celebrates Texas Art, Houston, Texas, Dominic                Molon,

             Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago Curator

             DPI:2004 Competition, Kellogg University Art Gallery Cal Poly, Pomona,                            California

2004    The Big Show, Lawndale Art Center, Houston

 

 

AWARDS & HONORS

 

2011    Finalist, Hunting Art Prize

2010    Individual Artist Grant, New Works Fellowship Award, Houston Arts Alliance

             Finalist, Hunting Art Prize

2008    Finalist, Hunting Art Prize, First Place, Assistance League Celebrates Texas Art 2008.   Dr. Kevin Salatino, Curator of Drawings and Prints LACMA, Juror

2007    Finalist, Hunting Art Prize

2006    Best in Show, Biennial Southwest, Albuquerque Museum, Albuquerque NM,                    Neal Benezra, Director of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art Juror and                 Curator 

             Third Place Prize, Assistance League of Houston Celebrates Texas Art, Jeffrey D.              Grove, Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art, High Museum of Art Atlanta               Juror

2005     Individual Artist Grant, Cultural Arts Council of Houston and Harris County

              Third Place Prize, Assistance League of Houston Celebrates Texas Art, Dominic               Molon, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago Juror and Curator

 

 

SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY

 

The Creators Project, 06.2016

Politiken, Københagen, Photo Essay, 03.28.2016

Kinetic, Art from Polsinelli Art Collection, Privately Published 2015

Victoria Machmudov, Under övervakningsradarn, Konstperspektiv, Limhamm, Sweden,  06.2014

Rasterfahndung (Tracing the Grid), Kunstmuseum Stuttgar (Show Catalog)

Just Not Yet: Dodging the Vaccum of Meaning, Landmark Gallery, Texas Tech University (Show

Catalog)

Painted Landscapes, Lauren P. Della Monica, Schiffer Books. 2013

Iris Mclister, WIlliam Betts Review: Terminal at Richard Levy Gallery, THE Magazine, 2011

Douglas Britt, Confronting Beauty - And The Ugly Truth - In A Mirror, Houston Chronicle, 11.07.2010

The Southwest’s Top Ten Exhibition Picks for 2010, Huffington Post, 12.30.2010

Charissa N. Terranova, William Betts at Holly Johnson, ARTLIES, Issue 65, Winter 2010

Manon Slome, The Aesthetics of Terror, Charta

Claudia Schmukli, Houston Area Show, Blaffer Gallery, University of Houston (Show Catalog)

Sharon Brock, Looming threats spark art, Palo Alto Daily News, February 28, 2008

Alan Artner, Chilling surveillance-camera images tap into fears, Chicago Tribune, January 18, 2008.

New American Paintings - Western Region Edition No. 72, Nick Capasso, juror

Kelly Klaasmeyer, Retinal Redux, Houston Press, April 19, 2007

Elaine Wolff, Reading Between the Pixels, San Antonio Current, March 13, 2007

Nikki Moore, Bi-ology, Austin Chronicle, March 1, 2007

Brian Staker, Abs, Tracked, Salt Lake City Weekly, April 18, 2007

Texas Biennial 2007, Austin, Texas, Show Catalog

Theresa Downing, SUPERvision, Foster Gallery, University of Wisconsin, Eau-Claire (Show Catalog)

Margery Gordon, Art Basel Miami: Pulse Beats Sophomore Slump, ARTINFO.com, December 9, 2006

Dan R. Goddard, Houston, in the eyes of the artists, San Antonio Express-News, December 3, 2006

Nancy Salem, Biennial Southwest, Albuquerque Tribune, October 5, 2006

Biennial Southwest, Albuquerque Museum, Show Catalog

Bill Davenport: Ripped from the Pages at CACHH, Glasstire.com, May 15, 2006

Bill Davenport: William Betts Makes Art and a Profit, Houston Chronicle, Sunday Zest Magazine cover

story, May 7, 2006

Alan Artner, Review: William Betts at Peter Miller, Chicago Tribune, March 10, 2006

Lauren Weinberg, William Betts at Peter Miller, Time Out Chicago, March 3, 2006

Fred Camper, Slices of Light, Chicago Reader, March 3, 2006

Kelly Klaasmeyer, Grab Bag: Diverseworks surveys Texas Painting, Houston Press, December 2005

Charissa N. Terranova, William Betts at Holly Johnson, ARTLIES 48, Fall 2005

New American Painting, Volume 60, Open Studios Press, 2005, Fereshteh Daftari, Assistant Curator,

Museum of Modern Art, Juror

Michael Paglia, Formal Ware, Westword Weekly, May 13, 2005

D’Lynne Plummer, Destination Nao, South End News, April 2005

Cate McQuaid, Incremental Disruption, The Boston Globe, April 15, 2005

Jeanne Claire van Ryzin, Brushed With Greatness, Austin American-Statesman, March 8, 2005

Elaine Wolff, Digital-induced Angst and Sensory Overload, San Antonio Current, March 10, 2005

J R Compton, The 2005 Texas Biennial: The Illusive 3rd Dimension, Dallas Arts Revue, March, 2005

Tyler Green, ArtLA Faves, Artsjournal.com, February 2, 2005

Kelly Klaasmeyer, Capsule Reviews, Houston Press, October 21, 2004

Tim Moloney, The Line on William Betts, 002 Magazine, November 2004

"Vardia Beach"

acrylic on canvas

48' x 72 inches / 1.22 x 1,82 cm

 

"Swimmers"

acrylic on canvas

48' x 72 inches / 1.22 x 1,82 cm

 

"Agali Beach"

Oil and acrylic on canvas

48' x 72 inches / 1.22 x 1,82 cm

"Woman On Rock"

acrylic on canvas

48' x 72 inches / 1.22 x 1,82 cm

 

''Voyage''

acrylic on canvas

72' x 48' inches / 1.82 x 1,22 cm