Danny Garcia is a slight fellow with an almost angelic smile and a faint voice. His smile suggests that he may know something that you don’t and that you never will.  It is the smile of a sage or a Jedi master, or a wizened shaman.  It is a Mona Lisa-like mystery is engulfed by an oversized baseball cap and enormous tortoise shell framed glasses.  A practical man, he wears two pairs of ear phones, one large pair and a smaller pair of ear buds underneath, just in case.  It is said that at one time they were attached to a device that played music but now plays static, the white noise being preferable to the pandemonium of a busy art room. Long ago it is told he neatly folded tin foil to wear under his baseball cap as a way to ward off harmful rays, like a space age Yakima.   He would sometime warn us in mid sentence with a sideways dip and a shout if potential hostile rays were incoming. He was once Kathy Reed’s boyfriend, another artist featured on this website; their similarity in artistic styles and personality is notable.

Danny was born in September of 1944 and is one of the most prolific and accomplished artists at Short Center South, creating his unique images for over twenty-five years. Early on at SCS he worked in watercolor with Mark Knott and later began to work in colored pencil, his current medium of choice, working with Pat Wood.  After a long hiatus Danny has recently begun to draw again. Mr. Garcia’s artwork has been in many exhibitions throughout Northern California and beyond.

Danny’s work consists mainly of landscapes, portraits, and abstract geometrics. His geometric drawings are of bold checkers in fluid shapes and have a “stream of consciousness” aura to them. More compelling are his portraits, sometimes of brightly colored men, and sometimes of military figures in profile which appear to be melting or morphing into pools of abstraction. Here his mastery of craft becomes evident; each drawing is made up of thousands of gentle pencil strokes which as a whole create a subtle texture and a flow of motion. These sensitive marks become almost meditative to view. However tender his technique may be there is nothing tentative about it – each line has a purpose, each line is deliberate.

It is his landscapes that have the most power to engage the viewer. These artworks usually contain an element that makes his work visually compelling and at the same time oddly disarming. They are not landscapes in the traditional sense; they are composed of strange paradises, black skies, and dizzying perspectives of cookie cutter houses and log cabins. Danny often dissects the rectangular space that a white piece of paper offers into compartmental shapes, each containing exactly what it should. In “Log Cabins With Totem Pole “ the space is divided into triangular shapes, one space is completely colored in black. Sometimes a river serves as a convenient spatial divider as in “Houses By The River At Night” and “River Tenting”, or city streets, as in “Tract Housing” and “Four Way Intersection”. From the slightly ominous “ Black Hole Amidst The Palms” to the downright enigmatic “Silent Night” Mr. Garcia adds a touch of the peculiar to all these works, or at least, it seems peculiar to the viewer – not to Mr. Garcia. Overhead perspectives of landscapes and city streets, like ancient Nazca aerial figures in South America and alien crop circles seem like they have a mystical purpose. If the aliens do come we would want Danny Garcia by our side to serve as our astral navigator.

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