Through the act of letting go internal processes are re-conceived as an external environment that can be recorded and negotiated by Brooklyn based abstractionists Manena Frazier, Elisa Soliven Gerber and Deirdre Swords. Their artistic processes aim to overcome the illusion of chaos – hence, these artists often refer to natural forces when discussing their work.
Frazier’s paintings celebrate the forces of the natural world and their ability to overcome inertia. In Gerber’s work, knot-like tensions evolve into images of enigmatic concentration. In Swords’ paintings, sensual and organic forms combine to evoke a curious world that is both corporeal and psychological. Manena Frazier is concerned with the constantly turning, changing nature of things. Impermanence pervades in stylized, vibrant, twisting forms. The line between figurative and abstract is obscured with her focus on the flow of both visible and invisible forces. Structures arise as a consequence of intuited patterns and rhythms. The paintings aim at a state of perpetual motion that is always in balance whether it be peaceful or turbulent.
Gerber’s paintings describe an internalized, abstract field. They use natural forms and invented symbols, to elicit evocative resonances. In particular, geometries in her work are based on the patterns that moving water makes when it hits still objects. Her watercolor paintings form structures using cross-hatching that negotiate absence. She builds organic structures, using small parts to form a larger whole.
Deirdre Swords’ process begins with a highly automatic exploration into shaping and composing, often many times over and resulting in a highly worked field. From the accumulation of these organic forces, she draws out a veiled narrative and movement that often reflects botanical and anatomical forms and always evokes both the feeling and the sensual worlds. Each artist, in her own way, confronts the burgeoning and awe-inspiring quality of nature (mother nature, inner nature) which by its essence is immeasurable and futile to contain. But in their individual ways, each artist’s work contains an aspect of that chaos and stills it into a unified expression. Much of the work shares a sense of spiraling forces, sometimes gentle, sometimes unrestrained but always approached with a certain unassuming quietude.