Julia Rooney “@SomeHighTide”

Arts + Leisure

poster for Julia Rooney “@SomeHighTide”
[Image: Julia Rooney "@SomeHighTide" (2020) Oil on canvas, 24 x 24 in.]
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Arts+Leisure presents @SomeHighTiide, an exhibition of recent work by Julia Rooney.

Comprising a series of two by two-inch paintings, Julia Rooney’s exhibition @SomeHighTide queries our intimate relationships with our smartphones and their attendant social networks, with particular regard to the ways such platforms shape our habits of visual consumption and comprehension.
By adopting the harsh dimensional constraints of Instagram and similar photo-sharing applications, Rooney acknowledges the ubiquity of the smartphone screen, while her decidedly traditional mediums of oil paint and linen disturbs their veneer of manufactured precision and homogeneity. As hand-wrought effigies of the Instagram photo-square, Rooney’s paintings call attention to the inherent incongruities in superimposing a digital framework over the organic experiences of life and expression.

While the visual arts and society as a whole have had a long dalliance with social media, the marked social isolation and diffuse tragedy of the past year has greatly amplified the role it plays in our lives, with digital interaction and social interfacing gaining currency over concrete, “IRL” relationships. In the breakdown of physical collaboration and the disruption of conventional gallery protocol, digital surrogates have taken on an especially helpful and urgent position, becoming a bulwark against isolation while allowing artists to disseminate their work. However, in the face of Rooney’s imperfect squares—their edges distended and stretched from the weight of thick, impasto paint—one becomes aware of the lack native to digital representation, the absence of the unique material presence that @SomeHighTide throws into sharp focus.
Referencing the mechanics of the digital cloud, each painting is named with the prefix “IMG”, and their series-like nature places them further into the context of digital photo-sharing, like an individual’s image morphing over consecutive “selfies”. The nested “frames” in IMG_0410, IMG_0411, and IMG_0412 directly reference the geometry of screens, while circuit-like motifs proliferate in IMG_0320 and IMG_0323, forming disembodied, painterly portraits of the imagined insides of social media.



from January 16, 2021 to February 21, 2021


Julia Rooney


http://www.artsandleisure.net (venue's website)



Venue Hours

From 11:00 To 18:00
Closed on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays


Address: 1571 Lexington Ave., New York, NY 10029
Phone: 212-828-5700

Between 100th and 101st St. Subway: 6 to 103rd Street.

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