Scribble By Design

The Red Arrow Gallery • August 8 through September 13

Alic Daniel’s Abstract Paintings Hit a Bull’s-eye at Red Arrow

by Joe Nolan

Alic Daniel, Painting with Yeti, 2014, Mixed media on canvas, 30" x 24"

Alic Daniel, Painting with Yeti, 2014, Mixed media on canvas, 30″ x 24″

Alic Daniel’s Scribble opens at Red Arrow this month—a big step for a young artist who just graduated from Belmont this spring. Daniel’s abstract canvases feature Keith Haring-esque lines that convey the ebullience of the graffiti pioneer’s work without copying that artist’s icon figures.

“You  can tell that he crafted his line work and his approach so he didn’t second guess himself at all,” says Daniel. “His work is very direct.”

Daniel’s abstract, repetitive paintings float between fine art and design. This is evidenced in Daniel’s show at Red Arrow and most of his mural work at The Treehouse restaurant in East Nashville. It’s also easy to imagine this stuff screen-printed on a tee shirt or featured in fabric designs.

The Treehouse space includes Daniel’s maze-like designs but also includes figurative work, which you won’t see at the artist’s Red Arrow exhibition.

“When I do something figurative it’s a whole other way of thinking,” he explains. “I have this traditional background that includes figure studies, but for this show the only figures will be implied or accidents between the lines.”


Alic Daniel, Relationship Study, 2015, Latex on canvas, 48″ x 48″

Whether he’s filling a canvas with abstract designs or painting a wall with figures or a portrait, Daniel always attempts to get lost in the details, striving to realize a quality of attention that leaves him immersed in the immediate application of the next line.

“When I go into these times of work I try to forget about everything else, and I only focus on the rules that inform a particular design,” he says. “I try to be present with exactly what I’m doing aesthetically and to forget about the overall project in that moment.” The best work at Red Arrow has the same focusing effect on gallerygoers.

Joe Nolan will host a gallery talk with Daniel at Red Arrow’s Art on Target event on Saturday, August 22, at 6:30 p.m. Scribble runs August 8 through September 13.

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