Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Gina Occhiogrosso in Lay of the Land

Gina Occhiogrosso, "Nobody wants to be here, and nobody wants to leave", 22 x 30", Flashe and gouache on paper, 2012

The exhibition Lay of the Landon view through February 20, 2014, deals with landscapes as they are perceived and reconstructed by artists. Each artist in the show focuses on a different aspect of this reconstruction. 

In mixed media paintings by Gina Occhiogrosso, the landscape is not quite settled. The viewer is presented with the materials that may one day come to rest as an observable landscape, but at present the shapes and colors must be solved like a puzzle before recognition can take place. The various trajectories of abstracted forms become a shared concern for viewers who may hope for resolution, while suspecting that the perceived tension carries a weightier message.
Extreme Measures, 11x14, oil on canvas, 2013

The artist in her own words:

"My work captures flux, slippage or time-suspended through the liquid and flexible medium of paint. The fragments interact to suggest movement, unease, or tremor. The land in these pictures is not quite finished being transformed, not in its image, nor in its process.

We can wait for the next one, 12x16, oil on canvas, 2013
It is an insecure space from my childhood and a cautionary tale for our future. Sources for the work are images found on websites that record natural disaster related damage such as FEMA (tornados, hurricanes, tsunamis, earthquakes). Elements dangle, merge and are transformed. The work is about our changing domestic landscape as well as our political and economic landscape, and how these forces have worked to destroy each other.

Through exploration of extreme weather events and their resulting catastrophic landscapes, more recent work is distilled into suggestive or abstracted spaces. The materiality of paint becomes reinforced by the use of a palette knife, and other much more physical practices.

Color has become more acidic, referring to an otherworldly, prophetic landscape. While I am interested in the world and it’s economic and environmental drift, I am also interested in unique personal experiences where life becomes untethered, and spaces become increasingly psychological."

- Gina Occhiogrosso

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