In Nesting in Deep Time, yearning becomes a question of proximity. For this new series of paintings, Iadevaia collapses various locales, both referential and imaginary, to muddy the binaries between intimacy and estrangement. Lush topiary gardens, ancient bridges, and towering rock formations share the same spatial plane as the New York City skyline, its contours emerging hazily like a mirage from the Emerald City. New landscapes form as the situations get stranger. Raymie’s paintings unfold like a choose-your-own-adventure, a swirling fantasmic soup that evokes as much Piranesi as it does the “blurred edges” of the Impressionists. Modigliani-coded cats, foxes and coyotes nestle in the foliage like statued sphinxes, and beckon us towards a wayward path. Lush flowers, playfully dancing around anatomical accuracy, threaten to spit water if you meander too close. Just as I am about to alight to what may lead somewhere, the stairs shift, leaving me dizzied; an Escherian-non-sequiter. Amidst these intricately crafted landscapes, remnants of human presence emerge as mere byproducts—an airborne helicopter, airplanes traversing the sky, and decorative clay pots that bear witness to our interventions.

Much of the collapse of compositional boundaries developed out of the pandemic, when, like many of us, Iadevaia found himself contained within the confines of home. Daily drawings became a ritual to both mark time and position oneself, recording the view from the hybrid space of his dining room studio, the window frame as viewfinder. From this locus of imposed stillness, the fountain pen traces pathways that the body is not yet able to traverse, envisioning a convergence of what is and what could be. Upon entering the exhibition, one encounters six of these drawings, wrought in monochrome using the starkness of black ink on paper, a caliginous counterbalance to the vivacity from the oil on panels in the main room. Here, Iadevaia’s interest in the repetivity and tactility of mark making is palpable. The drawings present almost like carvings, a meditative process where elements emerge within the interplay of gestural marks and intersecting cross-hatches. This obsessive record-keeping too permeates Iadevaia’s paintings, the resulting works skillfully oscillating between the realms of drawing and painting. The backgrounds are often rubbed into smoggy ambiguity, lime-green orbs of lantern-cast light emerging from gauzy foregrounds. Dry oil paint is daubed, blended, rubbed and scraped onto the surface in sumptuous layers, endowing the work with a chalkiness that makes one stumble. From these atmospheres, each form diverts from its designated place, interfering with the other’s edges.

Throughout the paintings, a fixed focal point eludes us, encouraging the eye to roam through the foliage in a circuitous process of rediscovery–the more we see, the more we look. Iadevaia positions us as omniscient viewers, loosening the logic to allow us to engage the works as if in our own enigmatic dreamscapes, a nocturnal realm entangled with desires, longings, and seemingly impossible aspirations.

Raymie Iadevaia (b. 1984 Newport Beach, California) currently lives and works in Los Angeles, California. The artist received a BFA from the California College of Arts and Crafts in San Francisco, California and an MFA from ArtCenter College of Design in Los Angeles, California. Recent solo and two person exhibitions of Iadevaia’s work include: To the Ends of the Earth at The Pit in Los Angeles, California; Yonder and The Intangible Forest at Halsey McKay Gallery in East Hampton, New York, and Colors Flying at Bozomag in Los Angeles, California. Group exhibitions include Hidden Mind at Voda Gallery in Seoul, South Korea; Greener Grass at Halsey McKay Gallery in East Hampton, New York; Cute Gloom at Lauren Powell Projects in Los Angeles, California; Search Party at My Pet Ram in New York City; Run with the Wolves at The Pit in Los Angeles, California; and Office Group Show at Bozomag in Los Angeles, California.