Arlene Baker “Monochromatics”

NohoM55 Gallery

poster for Arlene Baker “Monochromatics”
[Image: Arlene Baker "Silk Spaces #325" mixed media paining, (2019) 8 x 20 in.]

This event has ended.

Some years ago, sitting in my studio in London, working on an ensemble of painted paper on boards veiled with see-thru fabric, I was under pressure to figure out how to attach the veils to the paintings. I wanted to keep the work intact during my plane trip home to New York. After I had my young daughter glue a bit of fabric to a board, I realized that the gluing process would take too long. So I popped into John Lewis, an Oxford Street department store, and bought some straight pins to hold the ensemble together. Although I didn’t realize it at the time, this was the beginning of a series of paintings.

Upon returning to the US I began using pins, paint, and see-thru fabric to finish these paintings and to create new ones in a similar format. Eventually I exhibited these paintings in London and Schenectady New York. Some time later, while working in a studio in Virginia, I came to see these paintings as a coherent set, and I started exhibiting them in New York City as my “Silk Spaces Series.”

My use of silk and pins evokes some interesting reactions. A nurse was fascinated because the silk wrap-around was reminiscent of bandaging patients. A philosopher thought that I was a feminist Rothko. Collectors and artists remarked that her paintings have a meditative quality, communicating a sense of tranquility. A fellow artist thought that I had achieved a “perfect pitch,” harmonizing color, texture and composition. Another artist said that the paintings were spiritual. An art dealer thought of the Silk Spaces Series as a species consisting of distinct individuals. The works seem to have a life of their own.

As I was viewing an exhibition of my work it struck me that it would be challenging to create monochromatic paintings in the Silk Spaces format.



from September 03, 2019 to September 21, 2019

Opening Reception on 2019-09-07 from 15:00 to 17:00


Arlene Baker

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