Chris Leib and Reiner Hansen are husband and wife. Reiner, a native of Denmark, met Chris at a portrait drawing session in San Francisco. From the outset, there was an uncanny similarity in their drawing and painting style, as well as subject matter. Retrospeculation is the first time they are presenting their work together in a two-person show.
Chris Leib's artwork on display covers the years from 1995 to the present. Chris began as a classically trained still-life painter under the tutelage of Professor Roberto Lupetti. He also studied at the Academy of Art and San Francisco State University. In the late 1990s, he began painting aesthetically dark narratives. By the late 2000s, his work took a more humorous turn. His current paintings feature Bonobo chimps and astronauts in various odd settings and are loosely inspired by the species’(mis)interpretation of historical contexts.
Reiner Hansen studied at Kolding School of Design in Denmark. She also initially began as a still-life painter in the early 2000s, as reflected by several paintings in the exhibit. She soon moved to figurative and portraiture in terms of subjects.
In the late 2000s, she began to play with media driven subjects, creating a well- received series of self portraits that combined her features with that of reality TV stars.
Reiner Hansen's current work often references pop culture. Using fragmented imagery from glossy advertisement sources, she reconstructs humankind's distorted relationships to art history, nature, and the environment. Through a process of splicing and fragmenting, the painted subjects are pieced together like lines in a poem, individual in their statement, but viewed as a whole they offer a deeper meaning to our fast paced, media-driven culture.