The Cheryl McGinnis Gallery is proud to exhibit Uncharted Terrains, a solo exhibition of Maddy Rosenberg’s new paintings. Though based in New York City, Rosenberg gathers imagery as well from the months each year she spends in Europe. She is attracted to the crumbling facades of gothic architecture, bearing the weight of time, and its gargoyle or grotesque details. Though newer, 19th century New York buildings are aged enough to tell their own stories and mingle among their more ancient European counterparts in her compositions. The architecture of a place bears its own history, of its time and place when constructed. A building is also the witness of subsequent periods from those who have lived their lives within to those who have briefly passed through its walls. For Rosenberg, though inorganic, the buildings contain remnants of a human touch.
The juxtaposition of flat planes of saturated color with finely painted illusions of bits and pieces of architectural facades and spaces more clearly defines the abstract nature of the work while simultaneously emphasizing the evocativeness of the imagery. The trompe I’oeil images become more than mere depictions of reality while the identity of the painted surface is once again reiterated by the shapes of pure color.
Rosenberg has been dealing with the ideas of multi-panels for a number of years. Playing with its sequential aspect, spaces fluctuate between the surface and glimpses behind it. The relatively small scale draws the viewer into the minute representation of a world that offers reality with a twist. It invites an intimate, thought provoking relationship between participant and the work. Haunted and deserted spaces are created by changing the context of images referenced from actual pieces of a human made reality. Spaces are uninhabited, uninhabitable but invite the viewer to enter and discover the unexpected. One’s sense of order and proportion is challenged, as the implied presence of human life coupled with the subtly disturbing images evokes an uneasy response and re-evaluation in the viewer, who begins to realize that things are not what they seem.