Once, in Utopia

Kathryn Markel Fine Arts, 529 W 20th Street, NYC, NY
May 10 - June 16, 2018

above: Nemo, oil on canvas, 78 x 62", 2018

I have been exploring the language of abstract painting for more than 30 years led by a sensibility, formed early, which combines a deeply experiential appreciation of nature, most specifically, light, color, and atmosphere, with a fascination with composition, ambiguous spatial relationships and underlying formal structures. This set of dichotomies has taken the work on some pendulum swings over the years, now closer to nature, now closer to pure form.

In this suite of paintings I have chosen to approach the natural world in painterly terms. With no rules other than a vague sense of the gravity which tugs at the sky and holds us firmly to the surface of our planet. The content of these paintings is my own sense of chattering consciousness conveyed with brushmarks standing for breath, the streaming energy of nerves, cellular communication, or wind in the trees, a waterfall, flickering light on the path to a destination, maybe a chair found unexpectedly in a forest clearing. We are organic beings borne of flux and flow. With every step our perception of our surroundings is changed, often radically. Even sitting still we are buzzing, rattling, gurgling machines flying through time, our minds whirring with congeries of thought. Paintings provide a stillpoint of reference in this ebb and flow and allow us a moment to breathe and dream. In this medium of ultimate stillness I am working towards a reflection of both that restless energy that surges constantly within us and all around us and the calming stillness of color, space, and light.

Painting is a difficult form in which to express love, but it is what I have. Artists work hard and long to try to offer glimpses of utopia. Sometimes a few moments are enough.

To view the online catalogue, visit https://issuu.com/markelfinearts/docs/julian_jackson_catalogue