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Utah native Taylor Wright creates breathtaking, hyper-realistic oil paintings that are heavily influenced by two traditions of still-life painting from the 17th Century. In a vanitas still-life, objects are depicted that symbolize concepts like vanity, mortality and the folly of the pursuit of worldly goods. Memento mori —a Latin phrase meaning ‘remember you must die’— is a closely related discipline in which items like skulls, hour glasses, fruits and flowers remind the viewer of the impermanence of life.

In Shadow on the Vine, Wright explores a new concept of memento mori with a contemporary symbolic language derived from a 21st century American context. This captivating body of work is born from a culture of routine mass shootings, surveillance, police executions and a feedback loop of escalating alienation and spiritual crises.

Wright earned a BFA in Painting and Drawing from Utah Valley University and debuted his first solo exhibition at Bountiful Davis Art Center in 2021. He currently lives and works in Salt Lake City.