"Please Press Pause"
solo exhibition by Julie Pelaez
Exhibition: Saturday, October 12th, 2019 - Saturday, January 25th, 2020
Recently I found myself standing in a season of life where my kids still believe in Santa, my parents are still capable, my body is able to keep up with the physical demands I place on it, my husband and I still have plans we look forward to… If only I could continue life frozen in this phase - before health fades, before loved ones die, before these wrinkles further deepen, before my kids lose their innocence… but since time won’t pause, our mindsets must. Part art, part memory capsules, this exhibit challenges viewers to confront their own gratitude and acknowledge what they wish they could “pause”, either to themselves or on a shared communal piece.
Every artwork in this exhibit has 2 vertical rectangles – a nod to the pause symbol – some more obvious than others. Housed on the back of each original artwork is a space for the buyer to fill out their own personal “pause” gratitude list. Once purchased, the untitled artwork is then titled according to that day, representing a marker in time for that person’s pause of reflection. As artworks are generally hung for a span of years, their list will serve as a time capsule of sorts, to be revisited when the painting is moved years down the road, and the list has inevitably shifted. Please Press Pause is a reminder to us all to savor the present and observe our lives through a lens of gratitude.
Between the time this exhibit was conceived to present, a brother-in-law was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer and a grandparent slipped into dementia, further illustrating the importance of taking pause and really sinking into the good stuff.