painting and work on paper

Painting 'Common Ground' by Marilyn KirschIíve always been interested in architecture, human scale and visual ambiguities. Iím intrigued by the metaphors possible between the physical and the mental landscape, the latter being not any less real than the material world, just invisible. My art has evolved out of minimalism, but I was never interested in formalism. Simple images have a great power to convey complicated concepts, so the minimalist approach seemed to me the most effective tool I could use as I tried to express visually this invisible state of mind.

Painting 'Ceremony' by Marilyn KirschI still use reductive imagery, but recently Iíve introduced landscape and natural form into my work. I love photography and spend time both looking at the photographs of others and taking many photographs myself. Perhaps itís because of photography that thereís a bit of realism creeping into my abstract paintings, but I try to hide this realism as if it were a secret. Through the use of architectural references and sometimes even a traditional horizon line, Iím able to explore the tension between opposites. I try to find a point where the ambiguity between the ideas of close and distant, inside and out, measurable and infinite, the personal and the collective, even between inviting and menacing are in a delicate balance.

Painting 'Under Current' by Marilyn KirschI play with layers of paint. Each layer is painted and wiped away leaving traces of the image Iím trying to release. These layers build up by using both a control of the medium and an allowance for the accidental. The finished painting is a culmination of this process, showing the shifts of the image as it worked itself out onto the canvas. The surface of the painting is as important to me as the imagery and I try to work with these two aspects of painting, the physical object and the metaphorical content, in every work.

"My painting is a conversation between the current work and the previous canvas. In a way, my work is an ongoing conversation with art history and everything Iíve ever seen or thought. Each completed work tells me a little about what the next piece might be and the cycle begins again."

Marilyn Kirsch
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