body (1), second iteration, after Michael Joyce’s “this” 2010, Oil on linen, 80 x 70 inches. Private collection.
Honor Fraser Gallery
September 18 – October 23, 2010
Honor Fraser is pleased to announce Alexandra Grant’s second solo exhibition at the gallery, opening September 18 – October 23, 2010. Grant’s exhibition, entitled “bodies,” will include paintings on canvas and linen and works on paper.
With “bodies” Grant presents a new series of paintings using a cycle of poetry by her long-term collaborator Michael Joyce. The poems that Joyce specifically wrote for this series of paintings are in the form of what is called ‘haiga’. These texts serve as a starting point for each composition as Grant maps out the experience of the physical and intellectual body in oil on canvas and linen. Capturing the themes of Joyce’s original texts: romantic love and longing, creation myths, the loss of self in relation to the other, and interrogating the idea of how the feminine body is represented, Grant pushes her conceptual language of text, often in multiple languages. “bodies” reveals both maps of the experience of the feminine body – a woman painter painting the physical body – but also of the exchange and relationship of an artist with her muses (poetic language, and in this case, the male writer).
Departing from her previous work of acrylic on paper “bodies” is comprised mostly of oil paintings on linen. While these text-based paintings employ the effect of a Rorschach image – mirroring one side of the composition vertically with the other – the works emulate both a psychological and visceral sense of the “body” as layers upon layers of oil paint build upon one another creating a sensation of tactility and three-dimensionality. The imagery itself – words, bubbles, half moons, arches, rainbows – advance and recede simultaneously creating an optical effect of moving imagery and vibrating techinicolors. The divided symmetry of these forms reference the physical body itself; words become eyes, ears and other physical features as variations of arches communicate notions of female physicality.
body (2), second iteration, after Michael Joyce’s “smoke,” 2010, Oil on linen, 80 x 60 inches. Private collection.
body (3), second iteration, after Michael Joyce’s “and,” 2010, Oil on linen, 80 x 60 inches. Private collection.
body (4), second iteration, after Michael Joyce’s “the hills,” 2010, Oil on linen, 80 x 70. Private collection.
Installation views at Honor Fraser gallery, front gallery:
Photo credit: Josh White.