JEANIE GOODEN | BUILD YOUR FIRE
Over 14 years, this is my 7thshow at the Craighead Green Gallery. I wouldn’t have guessed that my work would become as textural as it is. I have been told that my paintings have become “sculptural”…a description I like.
Today, I rarely limit materials and I push myself to find new ways to layer surfaces. For this show, I am including one of the most deeply textured pieces I have ever created alongside very smooth paintings. My goal is to give a sense of variety and fullness within a body of work.
My paintings have changed during the many years of working in Mexico. A country progressive in design, the people also use very simple and basic materials to repair and repurpose things for every day use. Many of these techniques I use in my work.
The 10 paintings in this show, BUILD MY FIRE, feature all of the familiar materials of recent work including paint, textiles, metal, nail heads and hand stitching mixed into both monochromatic and color palettes. Edge details have become very significant to me and few paintings are without one or more metal or textile.
I make art because I find it difficult not to do it. The initial step of my creative process is to gather my strongest thoughts and feelings. For this work, I reached for quotes from artists. From Pablo Picasso: “Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working.” Inspiration is often seen as the beginning when ultimately it rarely is. When we challenge ourselves to show up, we can gather the tangible and the intangible to “build the fire” that ultimately allows us to experience the delightful sizzle of inspiration. “The artist must create a spark before he can make a fire and before art is born, the artist must be ready to be consumed by the fire of its own creation.” -Auguste Rodin.
If I build a fire inside myself, the inspiration that finds me in the studio will translate to the canvas. While it is rewarding when people see my work as beautiful, it is not my first priority. My goal is for my paintings to make a connection with people.
MARTY & RICHARD RAY | SHARED VISIONS IN CLAY & PAINT
Shared Visions in Clay & Paint, an exhibition currently showing at the Craighead Green Gallery, features pottery and paintings by Dallas artists Marty and Richard Ray. Much of the work is a result of collaboration with theme, design and color on pottery and canvas. The artists, married since 1971, have off and on intermingled ideas and skills to create art. This show includes collaborative slip-painted ceramics along with paintings inspired by the pottery. Art teamwork by the Rays involves a mixture of approaches including incising and glaze painting on clay and blending artistic skills for paintings on canvas. The paintings are a combination of line drawing by Marty and addition of color, texture and shadow by Richard. Marty’s unique black and white scraffito pottery is also included in the exhibition.
The work features abstracted city scenes, exhibitions, art classes and animated figures and animals. The work carries memories of place and time and the inventiveness of a distinct artist team.
Artist’s collaborations are not new but tricky when two creative individuals try to balance efforts. Marty and Richard have found a way to make it happen and the results have led to a collection of joyful pottery and paintings.
The collage drawings are made up of hand-painted paper cut into shapes, which are then sewn to each other. The work is very process orientated; I don't start with a definitive image or composition in mind. I may spend days coloring paper, other days simply cutting random shapes, the xacto blade performing as a drawing implement. I also cut and use charcoal drawings. I am creating a positive image but equally appreciate the negative shape that's created with the left-over paper. Once I have a grouping of colored shapes that appeal to me, I then begin assembling them with the sewing machine onto cards of paper, (I refer to these as postcards as they approximate the size and to an extent, they have a particular independence as an object). Once I have anywhere between 40 to 60 postcards, I begin to lay them out on my table creating a composition, these postcards will then be sewn to each other in layers. The end result appears like overlapping shingles of color and pattern.
In my painting practice, oil on canvas, the composition is often derived from a detail found in the paper works; they then become a maquette or sketch for the painting. I ‘apply’ the shapes in layers, overlapping them to create a similarly abstract composition but one that is ‘flattened’.
My approach at times feels more like a builder than a painter. I get excited by the rhythm or tension between two different colors, or the unexpected consequences when you put two different shapes on top of each other creating something entirely new. I like the idea of building and overlapping and enjoy stacking the composition from the bottom up which does not allow for 'correction' and therefore has, to a degree, a life of its own. The texture and the process of stitched thread seems very fundamental, fragile yet permanent. I'm very much interested in color and line, shape and pattern and the ability to build a composition.