RETNA in studio, seated with "Crème de la Crème", Los Angeles, courtesy of Alchemy Gallery

New York City, August 15th, 2023 – Opening on September 6th, Alchemy Gallery will host
RETNA’s highly anticipated upcoming solo exhibition “Pardon Me” during New York Armory Week. Located in the heart of New York City, Alchemy Gallery has curated an exceptional showcase of RETNA’s captivating works exploring the artist’s complex journey through calligraphy, abstraction, and emotional struggle.

Curated by Alchemy Gallery Co-Founder Jess de la Hunty, the exhibition delves deep into
RETNA’s multi-dimensional artistic world. De la Hunty shares, “Although the term ‘graffiti artist’ speaks to an elemental phase in [RETNA’s] artistic development, anyone familiar with his oeuvre knows he far exceeds this label. He is one of the most passionate artists I’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing and is constantly pushing the boundaries of his own practice and aesthetic to new heights.”

Featuring just two highly impactful works, the exhibition emphasizes duality and allows space for contemplative engagement. The centerpiece, “Pardon Me”, is a monumental triptych that presents a personal and intimate dialogue inspired by, and created during, a transformative period in RETNA’s life. Featuring his signature enigmatic script painted in luminescent white over washes of vibrant orange, purple, green, and blue, the three watercolor works, akin to stained glass windows, radiate tenderness and tranquility in stark contrast to his signature diamond-dusted, monochromatic canvases. The emotionally-charged presentation reveals an apology to his mother, seeking forgiveness for any pain and torment he’s caused, with the LA-based artist echoing Tupac’s ever-relevant classic “Dear Mama”.

The exhibition serves as an invitation to engage with RETNA’s artistic evolution and the intricate duality that exists within both his creative expression and personal nature. Pardon Me, on view from September 6-12 at Alchemy Gallery, provides a rare glimpse into an artist’s internal struggle, elevating the viewer’s understanding of his complex visual language.

For further information and inquiries, please visit
For press inquiries and high-resolution images, please contact:
Angie Raman | PR Associate, The KNOW |
Natasha Roberts | Founder, The KNOW |

“Pardon Me” by RETNA, courtesy of Alchemy Gallery


Marquis Lewis, widely recognized as RETNA, is an artist who defies conventional artistic labels. His enigmatic script, influenced by diverse mythologies and urban subcultures, conveys a unique form of poetry that speaks to the realities of modern life while transcending metaphysical dimensions. RETNA’s work resonates with spiritual and supernatural forces, creating an immersive experience through the combination of visual and auditory elements. Despite his global recognition, RETNA remains dedicated to his artistic integrity, bridging the gap between street art and contemporary practices.

About Alchemy Gallery

Founded by Jess de la Hunty and Sean Thomas, Alchemy Gallery is a dynamic art space
located in the heart of New York City. Dedicated to showcasing innovative and
thought-provoking contemporary art, the gallery offers a platform for artists to engage with diverse audiences. With a commitment to fostering artistic dialogue and exploration, Alchemy Gallery continues to push boundaries and challenge perceptions.


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