Shadowland is the title of the exhibition by Diana Copperwhite currently on show at 532 Gallery Thomas Jaeckel in New York.
Writing about her work Colm Toibin says:
“Her work is about painting first and foremost; [these] references merely serve a purpose. Thus digital images, which freeze and fragment an original image fascinate her, but such images in themselves are not enough, they provide a way into the painting. It is their visuality, which inspires rather than any precise sense of a blurred or fragmented reality. Because she physically likes making paintings, everything is subservient to what paint will achieve.”
Copperwhite makes paintings that move fluidly between representation and abstraction. Photographs, montage and assemblage all aid the process and become ancillary works that pin down fleeting thoughts, glimpses and reactions to a media saturated age. Her interests and sources are eclectic and wide ranging, from social media to philosophical debate to art historical references. Yet, as Toibin points out, her paintings are no more about the image than they are about the process of painting itself. Her work is phenomenological in that momentarily emotional responses override the need to capture reality. Something has piqued her interest and from that initial interest she thinks in colour, in tone, and texture, in setting herself a visual problem to which there is no single definitive solution. Her palette is composed of murky undertones punctuated by bright neon rifts. The fluidity and expressiveness of the painting gives little hint of the rigorous and formal abstract principles applied to the making.
Posted by Robert Armstrong