Exhibit runs through March 26th
Eleanor McGough Last Refuge
My paintings and paper cut-out installations explore our fleeting place in the vast patterns of migrations, climate change and time. I am drawn to insects for their elegant engineering, metamorphosis, crucial role in pollination, and their alien-like otherness that both captivates and repels us.
Commingling information from biology, textile patterns, and maps, my paintings combine layers of atmospheric depth with flat pattern. The result is often a blending of landscape, microscopic slide, and aerial view. Life forms inhabit terrestrial, aquatic, or atmospheric spaces, while articulating fragile and tenuous relationships within the complexities of changing habitats, insect migrations, and the aerial arena of flight.
The paper cut-out installations explore the concept of multiples in endless variation, the role of collections in natural history, and the astonishing fact that billions of insects are carried in air currents through the layers of our atmosphere – this idea serves as a visual metaphor to the broader context that all life is transitory and swept up in immense patterns of energy.
Group Exhibition features work by Rosalux Gallery’s three newest members: Betsy Alwin, John Gaunt, and Jim Hittinger.
Jim Hittinger’s paintings and drawings present a sparsely populated suburban dystopia. Andy Sturdevant, from the catalogue for Underlined Action (2015) writes:
“What do we find in Hittinger’s world? Much of it seems ominous – the sirens and flags and safety orange suggest impending doom of some unspecified nature. The International Orange he employs frequently cuts through the gray in the same way the designers of the Golden Gate Bridge intended the iconic color of that structure to retain a high level of visibility through the thick fog rolling into the bay every afternoon – a warning as much as a visual signature. But there are some elements of humor and surreal whimsy that don’t make the visit uniformly bleak.”Jim Hittinger
“My current series of works combines the pliability and strength of ceramics with the delicate structure of lace. In lace pattern, the negative space is intrinsic to its structure, carrying its pattern and a signified vulnerability. The forms I make allude to motifs of strength, stability and infrastructure. It is important to me that the lace be an actual structural element in the work. The lace conveys both strength and fragility, beauty and fallibility. This dichotomy, brought forth by surface texture and pattern, is further accentuated when put in relationship to other building materials, such as rebar and wood.
The use of lace is a very specific and personal choice. For me, it began as an experiment, trying to figure out how to convey a sense of temporality, a sense of ethereality embodied in strong form. The patterns themselves shape space in a graceful but orderly way, and when they are supporting either themselves or another object, that weight is emphasized. In these sculptures I wish to allude to the body (through the lace, a clothing material), to life (three dimensional form), and, then, to a balance between contradictions that becomes the subject of the work. Betsy Alwin
I have an empiricist approach to making. In recent years I have been developing a kind of “graphic scaffolding” inspired by natural systems, philosophy and the shifting architecture of rivers. This scaffolding or intuitive gesture has become a malleable motif for me across artistic processes – allowing me to generate new combinations of abstract structures, illusionistic spaces and diagrammatic drawing. The accumulation of this practice is beginning to yield a kind of personal topology. John Gaunt