New York, November 2010 – New paintings by Linden Frederick will be on view at Forum Gallery from November 23, 2010 through January 8, 2011. Linden Frederick: Night Neighbors will present 12 paintings depicting luminous rural American scenes at night.
Linden Frederick’s paintings in Night Neighbors often seem to set the stage for mysterious psychological narratives. Based on twilight scenes in Belfast, Maine, where Frederick lives and works, the exhibition recalls the stillness and loneliness of Edward Hopper, with whom he is often compared. A theatrical aspect to the work – whereby a human presence is evoked but not revealed – offers a powerful twist to the subject matter. The paintings were inspired by thoughts that the artist had when he and his wife were working on their unfinished home in upstate New York years ago. Frederick recalls “driving past finished homes at night as the lights were coming on and feeling filled with a sense of longing.”
“They touch the part of us that exists on the outside looking in. He paints what is. He doesn’t pretty things up, but he doesn’t have to: He finds beauty in the ordinary, familiar, and lost,” writes New York Times bestselling author Luanne Rice in her essay for the exhibition.
Among the highlights in Night Neighbors are Next Door, 2009, which serves as a defining picture for the show. In depicting the relationship between two neighboring homes separated by a telephone pole, the artist seems to wonder how people spend their entire lives living closely to each other. In Midnight, 2010, Frederick has painted the house next door to his, capturing both the solitude of the dwelling surrounded by darkness as well as the humanity suggested by the light from the interior.
The lowly mobile home takes on a profound quality in Trio, 2010. Reminiscent of a circle of covered wagons, the three dwellings at twilight appear to have an animated presence, watching something outside of the picture plane. A painting showing a simple building in a parking lot, VFW, 2009, evokes pathos as darkness falls on a Veterans of Foreign Wars building with a neon beer sign glowing from the second-story window.
In addition to the 12 paintings, the exhibition will also include 23 of Frederick’s studies for the paintings.
Work by Linden Frederick has been seen in exhibitions recently at the Center for Maine Contemporary Art, Rockport, ME; the Laguna College of Art & Design, Laguna Beach, CA; and the Farnsworth Art Museum, Rockland, ME.