- Unit Price
Charles’s first exhibition in New York was in November-December 1979 at The David Findlay Gallery on Madison and East 77th. It consisted of approximately six large oil paintings, depicting twilight and night time landscapes in both city and rural situations, plus preparatory drawings. The entire series emerged from his unhappy experience in graduate school at Queens College, during which he spent sleepless nights wandering through warehouse districts and suburban neighborhoods, recording the otherworldly environments created by artificial light. They were the streets of Flushing, NY illuminated by the glow of a night game at Shea Stadium and, as Charles puts it, “prefiguring Close Encounters of the Third Kind, or spotlights illuminating creepy, deserted factory buildings on the Brooklyn waterfront. Curiously, I never felt I was seeking danger and I never had an unpleasant encounter during these wanderings, whether in Connecticut, Queens, Brooklyn, or Chicago.” But it was in the northern mid-west where he experienced the combination of wide-open landscape punctuated by just a few landscape elements, as well as the extended hours of twilight, where he discovered some first usage of a symbolic vocabulary in such paintings.