Using common elements from her environment, Jenny Brillhart creates work concerned with the construction, process and design of medium, light, color, value and form. Brillhart, born in 1972, graduated with a BA from Smith College, studied at the Art Student’s League, and received an MFA from the New York Academy of Art. She lives in Stonington, Maine.
For Brillhart, the studio environment is both the space in which she works and the subject of her art. Through painting, installation and photography, she documents the passage of time, subtle shifts in light, the play of shadows, and the process of her decision making. Her surroundings, both found and created, become exercises in form and tone often with a reduced palette, to emphasize pigment, material and routine. Confronting the fundamental elements of visual art—space, color, light, and form, alongside questions of function and seeing—Brillhart’s practice also addresses philosophical issues of perception, experience, and memory. With such focus, her renderings probe the inner psychology of inhabiting a given space.
Brillhart has had recent solo exhibitions at Kuckei + Kuckei Gallery, Berlin, Germany and Emerson Dorsch Gallery, Miami, Florida. Brillhart is included in the 2019 deCordova New England Biennial, and in 2017 she showed at the Center for Maine Contemporary Art in a two person exhibition titled Temporality. Other past projects include an outdoor architectural installation at The History Museum in Miami, and the show and published book Room Service, organized by Staatliche Kunsthalle Baden-Baden Museum in Germany. Brillhart also participated in exhibitions with Locust Projects in Miami; the Sammlung SØR Rusche Museum in Germany; the PAMM, Miami; the Naples Museum of Art, Naples, FL; Dimensions Variable in Miami; the Anhaltinischen Gemäldegalerie Museum in Dessau and Roemerapotheke Gallery in Zurich.
Tessa O’Brien makes paintings that reference light, play with architectural space, and revel in color. Combining representation with process-based abstraction, O’Brien uses color & mark-making to impose a narrative upon the structures that she depicts in paint, or paints upon. Tessa received her B.S. from Skidmore College, and her MFA from Maine College of Art. She currently resides in South Portland, ME.
O’Brien states that observing her surroundings is a constant exercise, an action that brings joy and fascination. Her works convey a sense of place and the passage of time. Photographs of the artist’s daily environment and travels become reference material for the work, recalling the feeling of the air when the photograph was taken, the quality of light, the temperature and mood of the day. These records are then translated onto canvas. Time elapses between the initial moment of record and the making of a painting, creating gaps in information that turn into improvisation in the studio through color and mark making. Paint becomes a medium of experience, representing the space between moment, place, and memory.
O’Brien has shown throughout New England, including a recent solo exhibition at Elizabeth Moss Galleries in Falmouth, ME, and an upcoming solo show at Dowling Walsh Gallery in Rockland, ME. She has attended residencies at Monson Arts, Haystack, Vermont Studio Center, Hewnoaks, and Stephen Pace House, and will be an artist in residence at the Studioworks Residency at the Tides Institute in Eastport, Maine, and the Joseph A Fiore Residency at Rolling Acres Farm in Jefforsonville, ME this fall. O’Brien co-founded the Portland Mural Initiative with her partner Will Sears, and operates a mural and sign painting business called Better Letter Hand Painted Signs.
New Works by Gallery Artists presents recently completed works by Scott Kelley, Marilyn Turtz, Warren Seelig, Cig Harvey, Greta Van Campen, Susan Van Campen, and Shawn Fields.
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