ART :: GEORGIA ELROD : HERE AND HERE :: Now at John Davis Gallery in Hudson, NY
The paintings and drawings of Georgia Elrod invite poetry — or perhaps they are poetry? — in so far as in transmuting experience into visual form, they perform the inverse maneuver: asking more questions even as they answer the ancient riddle, “how do I see”?
In 2009, in an attempt to verbalize this alchemy, I wrote that in Elrod’s work, “a palimpsestic suggestion of knowns creates a new language of juxtaposition, leading the viewer to superreal landscapes of new meaning,” that “much as the poet takes a scissors to linear prose, presenting his audience with a new, dynamic verbal frame, so has this artist taken on visual stimuli, deconstructing our anticipated order; eschewed are expectations of scale, construction, biology – playfully reconstituted here as free verse.”
Indeed, “the sentence has been broken,” as “both we and the canvas are escaped into a dynamic scheme at once familiar and surprising – our vocabulary providing only the door fee to these new compositional worlds.”
In Here and Here, a new show at the John Davis Gallery in Hudson NY, we have the privilege of seeing a new body of work in a setting that complements it well — a converted carriage house whose architecture, like these paintings, “makes you want to explore,” as the artist explains below in a brief conversation about her process.
I’m Georgia Elrod, I make paintings and drawings. I work primarily in my studio in Lefferts Gardens, Brooklyn.
“Diamonds or broken molars?”
Recently I’ve been painting objects, structures and characters. The images I paint may seem functional or bodily but can’t easily be identified. To me this liminality is exciting. References to architecture, adornments, landscape, machines, and frequently human forms ground the work: as a composite these can remain nameless, despite whatever triggered associations may emerge for the viewer. The title for the show, “Here and Here” refers to simultaneity. I also wanted the title to be forthright; here I am presenting my work and now you can take it where or how you want to…
The spaces at John Davis Gallery are unique. In addition to the front gallery and courtyard, there is the Carriage House. Originally this was indeed a carriage house, then a bomber-jacket factory, now it houses four floors of solo shows. My show is on the second floor. I was excited to have a show there; the building lends itself to each artist in a different way. All of the artists showing in the Carriage House have their own spaces, yet the architecture enables much of the work to interact. The nature of the building makes you want to explore.
I work from an accumulation of images, most of which are imaginary or subconscious. Observations seep into my work, often cropping up in ways that mystify me (I like this). My process starts and continues with notes and many drawings in pencil on paper. The images that resonate become paintings on paper, some of these then get re-worked on canvas. Lately I’ve been attracted to painting light and reflections- I like how paint can make something appear both meaty and etherial. I often use symmetry in my work, again this references the body. Manipulations in scale and perspective intend to question the audience and their viewpoint: what are you looking at, from where? Micro is macro, and vice versa sometimes.
I’ve been thinking a lot about identification and contradiction. Also pleasure, humor, opulence vs the mundane. In the studio it’s about how paint moves around, how colors combine, how imagery emerges. As with dreams, sometimes I decipher a painting much later. Like so many other artists would probably agree, working is searching. The world is merging and shifting, one question leads to another.
Here and Here
John Davis Gallery
36 1/2 Warren St.
Hudson, NY 12534
September 15th – October 7th, 2012
Georgia Elrod [www.georgiaelrod.com] is a dedicated friend and member of the Exit Strata creators community, who lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. She has participated in co-creative projects with the magazine since its inception, actively engaging in salon activities as well as collaborating on the flyleaf for PRINT! Vol.1 with editor Lynne DeSilva-Johnson. In addition to being a working artist, she is a founding member of tART collective, a curator/member of Awesome Creators Heliopolis Projekt, and runs an active decorative finishing business.
Oh, and by the way: her work has been inspiring Lynne since they first met in the yard at Friends Seminary in 1985. They’ve been having critically engaging conversations about art, culture, music, and…worms… ever since.