Opening Reception: Friday, September 2, 2011, 5-7 PM
Multiple layers—of mixed media and paint, of memories and meaning—characterize the styles of Joan Bohn and Leslie Tejada, whose spontaneity and personal introspection combine with a tactile awareness and a strong sense of metaphor to produce paintings that invite contemplation.
Bohn’s penchant for constructing and deconstructing her paintings many times over allows her to celebrate serendipitous discoveries within the paint, paper, fabric, and other media that bring dimension and depth to her work. She builds up her surfaces with her hands, brushes, and other tools, then digs back through the layers, inevitably losing some of the paintings’ elements but in the process making way for surprises to emerge. “I achieve balance through a give and take between the intended and unintended, the perfect and imperfect,” she says. “It’s about discovering beauty through loss.”
Bohn’s new series of paintings displays a lighter palette than much of her previous work, introducing a softer, more delicate feel and a quiet elegance that pairs well with the subliminally Asian, haiku-like sensibility of her panels. “It’s more about what used to be there, what isn’t there anymore,” she says. “I’ve elevated the ground a bit more, because the ground, the negative space, is as interesting to me as the actual content.”
Tejada’s paintings in oil, acrylic, and alkyd are also evocative and conducive to deep thought. Her use of metallic and interference pigments containing pulverized mica contributes to her work’s signature luminescent glow, with colors that change depending on the light and the viewing angle. An accomplished colorist guided by intuition and the skill born of many years of dedication to her craft, she uses multiple layers of pigment and glazing to create ridges and curves that add a dimensional, highly textured quality to her work. The result is less overtly narrative, more metaphorical in its exploration of the natural world and mystical realms.
Tejada has long found inspiration in Middle Eastern art and the romantic poetry of the ancient Sufi masters, and she returns to this theme with new paintings that convey a sense of richly colored tapestries. “The ‘Kilim’ and ‘Magic Carpet’ paintings in this collection are windows into a terra incognita whose secrets are veiled with the intricate patterns and textures of Middle Eastern weavings,” she says.
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