Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Jamie Bowman & Marcus Michels

McGowan Fine Art announces a show featuring the work of Jamie Bowman and Marcus Michels. The show will run from May 10-June 10, with an artist’s reception on May 13 from 5 to 7 PM. This show is free and open to the public.

In the rush to soak in the imagery of a painting, viewers often forget to look beyond the figure or still life. This show that demands more of the viewer- be seduced by the lovely visual imagery but linger over the artists’ mastery of the paint. These two artists approach their different genres with a similar zest for brushwork.

Jamie Bowman, currently an adjunct instructor at the UNH studio program, chooses still lifes as the means to tell the story of how her paintings are created. Simple arrangements of flowers or figurines allows her to focus attention on the scraping, daubing and smudging she lavishes on her canvases. In “Still Life with Shell and Spoon” the weave of the linen peeks through the paint offsetting the texture with luscious strokes of silvery paint. The paintings feel more resolved than they actually are. The viewer knows what they are looking at but recognizes that edges & details disappear into the paint. Bowman states that she paints “fleeting moments of a certain experience. Moments in which, as in memories, objects begin to appear with relative clarity but then slip away quickly.”

Marcus Michels, painting faculty at Ringling School of Art in Sarasota, has a similar interest in what the paint can do when it meets the linen. In “Leandra Leaning” the scumbled paint creates an interplay of woven fabric and impastoed pigment, adding another layer to the emotionally charged imagery. The figure is deep in thought, leaning on a door way- one foot in, one foot out. “Painting the figure in an interior space is a way for me to give the viewer a somewhat voyeuristic look into the figure’s anxiety, urgency, or obliviousness to tension. My paintings are about realizing the complexity of human behavior,” says Michels. The complexity extends to his paintings with their underpinnings bared. Sketching and thin washes are juxtaposed with heavier applications of paint giving a similar voyeuristic view of the artist’s process.

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