Sunday, April 19, 2009
The work of Fran O'Neill will be on display at the John Davis Gallery from April 2nd through 26th, 2009. There will be a reception for the artist on Saturday, April 4th, from 6 till 8 p.m. This will be the first featured exhibition in the main galleries of Ms. O'Neill’s work. She previously exhibited in the Carriage House in 2007.
Here are some of the artist's thoughts about her work:
“Growing up in a small rural town in Australia is quite a contrast to my present living situation here in New York. My vivid memories of the Australian landscape compelled my need to find a visual language particular to me. I have a deep interest in sewing and have always had a connection with various “fabric/pattern”, as this began to enter my work; I began to think about my connections to different countries, in particular their crafts and the various ways they tell their stories. I have been exploring patterns, and color, the repletion and saturation of the mark, breaking sometimes abruptly the mark itself, to explore themes of isolation and absence while preserving a symbolistic ambiguity, an openness of meaning for the viewer.
The fabrics that I have been using come from Asia, Japan, India and Africa: batik, woodblock prints, and others. This has fueled my interest in fabric and patterning in the history of Western and Eastern painting, Islamic art, Dutch Still life & interior painting, Persian miniatures and African art—investigating the ways in which intricately patterned fields can work as a veiled entry into another world.
The idea that a pattern and fabric, so artificial in its representation, can still take on a range of emotions and personas, also acting as a metaphor to explore cross pollination of cultures and countries that I have traveled to and now live in. The more I explore these links I feel I am getting a deeper understanding of both myself and the richness the language of painting can bring to my subject: painterly surfaces, the sensuality of color, line, form and marks combining to bring about images, which are sometimes difficult to decipher."
Ms. O'Neill received a Joan Mitchell grant/award in 2008.