September 4 - October 6, 2019
440 Gallery opens the Fall season with Dislocation, encaustic and mixed media paintings by Amy Weil. In Weil’s first solo show at the gallery, she explores the space between what is revealed and what is concealed. The dynamic between these two opposing forces is inherent in her process. She repeatedly builds up layers of wax and other materials, and then selectively scrapes away the surface to reveal a rich, enigmatic history of imagery and color.
Weil plays with multiple dichotomies: line vs. texture, nuance vs. bold contrast, the geometric vs. organic. She states “The geometric and the organic are both integral to my idea of bridging lawlessness and order. The circles, ovals, graffiti and other organic shapes playfully engage the more rigid structure of the grid.”
For Weil the repetitive layering and subtraction is meditative and intuitive. Although the resulting psychological and emotional resonance of this abstract work allows the viewer to project their own emotional experience onto the paintings, the artist has drawn a connection between the imagery of her work and her daily preoccupation with political issues, specifically the children separated from their parents at the southern border: the revealed and concealed truth, the bars and grids of prisons and containment, the fragility of innocence trapped, and the layers of history repeated, remembering her own distant relatives killed in Nazi concentration camps. “I have never considered myself a political painter but in the world we live in, I cannot ignore what is happening in front of us.”
This summer, Weil participated in the Michael David Summer Residency, titled “Frozen Gesture,” a group installation in the Michael David gallery.
She has exhibited extensively in New York, Brooklyn and New England. Her work is in many private collections in the United States and Europe.
Dislocation opens September 4 and runs though October 6. The opening reception is Saturday, September 7 from 6 – 8 pm.
In the Project Space: “Color Shift”
Jo-Ann Acey has been creating series of leaves for several years. In this exhibition she takes her inspiration from the season: “Autumn is a wonderful time of year. I find so much inspiration in the color and clarity of light.” The singular subject of these works on paper— each a solo leaf— offers the opportunity to explore the contour of each leaf and its unique identity. The delicacy of color and the interior lines reverberate, mimicking the structure of trees and the vibrance of autumn’s palette.
Leigh Blanchard’s most recent experimentation in digital photography, Flower Studies, was created through the process of scanography and the use of photographs from her personal archive. Using flowers as her subject matter, she arranges collages on the bed of her scanner, then moves the pieces across the surface while scanning is in process. These distorted images are combined with her own older photographs to create a playful tension between the distorted, digital petals and the softness of the abstract photographs.
Janet Pedersen says she is “drawn to how a subject is lit by the sun—the shapes that emerge and the effect this has on the setting.” Most of this recent work was done on site in the northern Manhattan neighborhood of Inwood. The gardens in Fort Tryon Park, views of the majestic Hudson River with the George Washington bridge in the distance— all provide powerful subject matter for Pedersen’s plein air paintings, captured with a gestural freedom that conveys both bravado and nuance.