Monday, September 20, 2010

New work

Here is a new piece called Fortuna, the third painting in the "Seen and Unseen" series.  I think it's finished but I am also considering mounting it on a dark, reddish-black background.  I notice that I go through a cycle with new pieces that is sort of like cycles in dating---I'm in love, no I'm not, this is perfect, no it's not, this is the best, oh no, don't get to happy, something will go wrong........Anyway, I'm happy with Fortuna at the moment.

REMEMBER: Open Studios, October 15,16,17 at Arc Studios, 1246 Folsom St., San Francisco

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

FourSquared closing reception and preparing for open studios

The current show at ARC Gallery,  FourSquared, will have a closing reception on Saturday, September 18th from 10am to 3pm.  There will be an Artist's Panel from 1pm to 2pm.  My studio will be open as well.  The opening reception, on Friday, August 27, was intense--lots of people, lots of family, lots of art talk.  The first sale of work from my 5 piece "Illusion of Choice" series was completed that evening.  Yes, Do Supermodels Dream of Anorexic Sheep?, at left, was the first to leave home, but her sisters, a sample of which can be seen at right and below, are still in my studio, waiting to be seen, and perhaps adopted, at Open Studios in October.  Although I had a somewhat conflicted time producing the "Illusion of Choice" suite of works, I kind of love them now, as they are on their way out into the world.  Both studio space and mental space are opened up and I am enjoying focusing on my new series, "Seen and Unseen", which will include mixed media paintings, artists' books and assemblage. 

"Seen and Unseen" ( here you see a detail from the first painting in that series, Dites-moi) continues my ongoing rumination about Femininity, in both its luminous and disturbing manifestations, its cultural distortion and archetypal power.  Several years ago I was in Italy, and when you are vacationing in Italy, going to Museums and churches, you are completely surrounded by Mary.  It's all Madonnas, all the time.  I became very interested in the various iconographic conventions of the religious paintings that I saw everyday.   I especially enjoyed the attributes of the Virgin-- objects included in her portraits that symbolically indicate her qualities, virtues and powers.  One night I had a dream that took the form of a slide show and each slide was an attribute of Mary: a crown of stars, a mirror, a spindle, a book, Lilies, a rose, many others.  A narrating voice said "you  should go home and do portraits of the bad girls of the bible.  You should portray Eve, Jezebel and Salome and give them the attributes of Mary". My first thought at waking up and remembering the dream was "gosh, that seems kind of blasphemous."  Many times over the years I have attempted to follow the exact instructions of the dream, to base work explicitly on the bible stories of Jezebel or Salome, but those pieces inevitably failed.  Instead, with "Seen and Unseen" I am implicity exploring the attributes of good and bad girls.  So far, I have been able to re-experience the playful and exuberant feeling of the dream.

On a final note, another really good thing happened at the FourSquared opening.  I was able to buy the fabulous Sabertoothed Rabbit, below, by the fabulous saberbrushed painter, Sandy Yagi.  I have admired her work for many years and I can't wait to bring this angry bunny home.  Come and see the rest of Maestra Yagi's wonderful hybrids while you have the chance, along side the other fascinating work in the show.

Tanya Wilkinson

Tanya Wilkinson