Jorge Guillen and Reid Ramirez

November 17 - December 15, 2019
Opening reception:
Saturday, November 16, 7—10pm

Motel is pleased to announce Slipstream, an exhibition of new paintings by Jorge Guillen and Reid Ramirez, opening Saturday, November 16 and on view through December 15, 2019.

The painting that I have recently been working on revolves around the idea of the “angle of reflection.” In the game of pool, the angle of reflection refers to what the ball will do mathematically when shot at a certain angle. If you shoot a ball at 30 degrees, it will bounce back at 30 degrees. The title and idea of this painting comes from thinking about that as a perspective of life and how every choice we make depends on the outcome that we want and if we don’t completely understand that math or concept then we can’t expect to know the outcome.

I remember as a kid my dad always wanted a pool table. We never had a full-sized one, but I remember having a small kid-version. At this point in time my family and I lived in an apartment. We barely had space for anything with my entire family living in one bedroom and my cousin living in the second and my uncle in the third. Some of my other cousins at the time had purchased a house and they had a pool in the backyard and a pool table in the basement. I didn’t understand at the time, but to my dad that represented a sign of wealth—that you had made it. I think having space in general represented wealth and having space for a pool table represented it even more.

Now I think of the pool hall as a place for my friends and I to hangout, play a game and have a cheap pitcher of beer. None of us are wealthy, but what it represents for us is different than what it meant for my dad.


Around the time I was working on Spill and Celery I was reading a book called Do Metaphors Dream of Literal Sleep? by Seo-Young Chu. There's a part in the introduction that describes a specific metaphor involving celery, coffee and cream. She describes how the metaphor unfolds in the mind making for a complicatedly active image. When I was reading this section, I accidentally spilled an entire cup of coffee on the book. It felt very strange in the moment and the book is now coffee stained in that part, reinforcing the memory with a brown visual marker. I had already been interested in the images of spilled water on white formica in my kitchen and was making the painting about this one particular spill that I took an image of. After this incident with the coffee, I decided that I needed to add an aspect of the experience into the painting. Celery as a word and a flavor seemed to make sense in relation to the skin of the baby being described by Chu. The spill in the painting takes on an otherworldly figuration, and the green of the "celery" increases an unsettling slippage in the picture.