JEANE COHEN - In the Walls of My House There Were Spirits (installation)
Zolla/Lieberman Gallery is proud to present JEANE COHEN: In the Walls of My House There Were Spirits on view in our Main and South Galleries from March 26th through May 1st.
In this body of work, Cohen is wringing pathos into the paintings by drawing on experiences of disintegration, fear, a collapsed boundary between interior self and outer world, and feelings of futility. Addressing what can be framed as a personal or cultural threat of spiritual collapse, the paintings’ untethered fields imprint the churning, melting, bending, dislodging, and charred sensations of continuously renegotiating reality.
An unrelenting drive towards survival through meaning-making summons up atmospheric snags and clusters, ethereal ciphers, spirits and animals in the paintings. These fleeting apparitions stem from the desire for protector, guide, prophet, or ancestor. As ominous as they are comforting, these sensory conglomerates (such as a house, angel or abstract nugget) shapeshift across the pictorial space, morphing and retreating before the viewer’s eyes. Marks transform as they loosen their tether to an emblematic subject such as an angel or house, unfurling into gusts of diminishing matter.
Each painting acts as an arbiter between released voids and potent events. Strongholds are often solidly depicted, soaked in emotion or shelled into a rhythmic structure, before yielding to undermining ruptures, irritants, blankness and unrealized events. The impulsive process of painting through this friction begets paintings that are entrenched, holding themselves and their fragmented components together, whilst succumbing to fragility, being almost shattered, faded, or about to blow away. There is the possibility of origins at these discrepant junctures in the paintings, where fecundity may spring forth.