About the Work
My paintings are succulent in color and reductive or repetitive in composition. The grid provides an underlying structure for much of my work. Its textile sensibility comes courtesy of my DNA, as I am the great granddaughter of a weaver, the granddaughter of a tailor, and the niece of both a dressmaker and a lacemaker.
Studio view in March 2022, with small Tutto paintings on panel on the far wall and new canvases at right
The new work in 2022, Tutto, continues the formal themes I have been working with for the past several years: a divided field, a strong emphasis on the horizontal, and saturated color. In the early days of the pandemic I worked mainly on paper, producing Mezza, Vico, and Riz, the series you'll see as you scroll down. Tutto flowed from them.
Working on paper is different from working on canvas or panel; painting large is different from painting small; and tube paint—oil or acrylic—is different from velvety gouache, luscious oil stick, or the luminous wax of encaustic. I have employed all of these methods and materials for many years, but always separately. With Tutto—Italian for everything—I have chosen to explore my ideas using all of them.
I don’t mean to say that I’m working with a material mishmash. Within the series I am using specific materials for each painting. However, the variables— different arm motions required for working large or small, different paint viscosities and drying times, the refraction of color through different mediums—are all elements that affect the outcome. Of course I have a vision for Tutto, but with this all-in-one strategy, there’s also room for surprise.
If you are familiar with my oeuvre, or if you are new to it as you scroll through this website, you'll see that the later works in the Silk Road series feature the same bisected field with horizontal bands over what appears initially to be a monochromatic field. Transitions are interesting as one idea morphs into another. Tutto will carry on the tradition of the bisected field while Silk Road will double back and resume its identity as a series of color fields. As for the Silk Road paintings that look like Tutto, the creative path is not like an interstate highway with Point B at the end of a relatively straight shot from Point A but more like the fabled Silk Road of history, with its multiple routes, some parallel, some going off in totally different directions.
I discuss some of these issues with artist Deanna Sirlin in Contemplating the Horizontal, which appears in the Summer 2022 issue of The Art Section.
You can see more in my catalog, Tutto and Related Works.
Installation of Silk Road in solo exhibition From Dawn to Dusk, at Odetta Gallery, New York City, 2019
Five Mezza on the studio wall. The series comprises 25 works,
from 30 x 22 inches to 14 x 11
Mezza is the third of three series on paper produced during the pandemic. Mezza means “half” in Italian, an obvious nod to the way I divided the field. Working with two halves is a chromatic challenge, because not only do I need to make each half work on its own, but both halves need to work together visually. In the darkest days of the pandemic, especially, it was a joy to be surrounded by such lush and uplifting hues. Mezza consists of three sizes: 30 x 22 inches, 20 x 14, and 14 x 11. The paper (which I used as a full sheet, as well as halved or quartered) is 300-pound Arches hot press, which has a velvety surface. Its substantial thickness is sufficient to absorb the water media I used—gouache, watercolor, and wax emulsion—without buckling.
Installation of Vico on my studio wall. Twelve from this series of 27
have gone to a private collection on Boston
Vico is a new series, completed in 2021. Worked in oil mediums (oil stick, oil pastel) on prepared handmade paper, it is an exercise in color, material, and process—a celebration of life beginning to return to normal after a pandemic year of relative isolation.
Installation of Riz on the studio wall before individual pieces were sent to galleries in Atlanta, Chicago, and New York City
Image below: Each Riz comes in its own portfolio
Summer is my time to work on paper, but with the pandemic I ended up working on paper for most of 2020 and 2021. Riz, so titled because I'm working with horizontal bands of color, is the first of three series I produced during this period. These paintings are oil on handmade paper, each 14 x 14 inches. There is no "meaning" here, just a chance to visually dive into deep, rich, color. Each painting comes in its own portfolio.
A selection of Joss on the studio wall
Chromatic Geometry 13, 2013, encaustic on two panels, 24 x 48 inches
Swipe 14, 2016, oil on 300=lb. Fabriano hot press, 30 x 22 inches
Soie 10, 2010.gouache on Rives 140, 22 x 30 inches
Diamond Lattice 25, 2012, graphite and micaceous oil stick
on Fabriano 300 lb. hotpress, 30 x 22 inches
Silk Trail Prints
Silk Trail 342, ongoing series, unique digital
print on 11 x 8.5 inch archival paper