Reynolds Gallery to exhibit work from Richmond artist Joan Elliott: Infinity Fields
September 6 @ 7:00 pm - November 1 @ 9:00 pm
Reynolds Gallery is pleased to announce an exhibition in the upstairs galleries of recent paintings by Richmond-based artist Joan Elliott. Infinity Fields will premiere with a public reception from 7 to 9pm on September 6 and will remain on view through November 1, 2019.
Celebrating her fifth solo exhibition with Reynolds Gallery, Joan Elliott presents a series of individual paintings and diptychs on panel that display her evolving use of geometric abstraction and landscape painting. Elliott merges these styles into luminous, many-layered paintings of oil and graphite that explore the scenes and architecture she has observed during European travels.
Each painting in Infinity Fields draws inspiration and forms from specific combinations of where Elliott has recently traveled; geographic convergences which echo the stylistic combinations that she develops. A stunning example comes in the form of Sainte-Chapelle, which overlays a cool-hued scene of Virginia’s James River with complex patterns that reference tiling seen in Rome, Italy and Lisbon, Portugal. In her statement for the exhibition, Elliott expands upon her practice and inspirations:
In this body of work, I merge landscape, geometry, and the arabesque. The combination allows for a structural weaving of space, energized by visual counterpoints of line and abstraction.
All incorporated tile and mosaic patterns were researched onsite during recent travels in Uzbekistan, Portugal, Italy, and Spain. The designs have an energetic presence beyond decoration, the result of being silent witness to everyday life in community spaces, places of worship, and palaces. Centuries old, they are as resilient as the natural landscape. Working with both taps into a source outside and within, embodying a common thread of earth and humanity.
Many of the paintings begin with landscape imagery, which provides an organic base. Paint and glazes are applied; inscribed lines, sanding, and scraping work the surface to further describe or dissolve detail. Onto this foundation, I experiment with layering multiple transcribed patterns. The designs intertwine, creating pathways and captured shapes that recede, float, or compress space.
The resulting mandala-like images act as radiant structures. Some are still and contemplative, others subtly pulsate with kaleidoscopic energy. Becoming infinity fields of natural repetition, the paintings present a continuous rhythm to quiet the mind.
About Joan Elliott
Elliott received her BFA in painting from Virginia Commonwealth University (1978) and lives in Richmond, Virginia. She has been a painting instructor at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Studio School since 1991. Her work has been exhibited at Galerie de Bellefeuille, Montreal, Quebec; American University Museum, Washington D.C.; Maxwell Davidson Gallery, Ruth Siegel Gallery, both, New York, NY; The Art Museum, SUNY Potsdam, Postsdam, NY; Taubman Museum of Art, Roanoke, VA; Randolph-Macon College, Ashland, VA; Chrysler Museum, Norfolk, VA; Virginia Historical Society, 1708 Gallery, and Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, all, Richmond, VA. She is a Franz and Virginia Bader Fund Grant award recipient (2013) and included in the VMFA exhibition Un/Common Ground (1990). This is her fifth solo exhibition with Reynolds Gallery. Public and corporate collections include Bank of America, Charlotte, NC; Markel Corporation, Chicago, IL, and Richmond, VA; Capital One, McLean and Richmond, VA; PriceWaterhouseCoopers, Columbia, SC; Ethyl Corporation, MaGuireWoods, The Federal Reserve Bank, and the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, all, Richmond, VA.