Preparing for Solo at Athenaeum

IMG_20170429_111308082These two new paintings will be featured in my upcoming August 2017 solo exhibition – Seduction – at the Old Town Alexandria, Virginia Athenaeum Gallery.

Both pieces, 36″x60″ acrylic on canvas, feature a man with great dignity and power, yet the images are infused with color and an other-worldly feeling.  Ambiguity, uncertainty, perhaps fleeting glimpses of reality infuse these abstracted visuals of modern life.

 

Making New Artwork

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Studio of Washington, DC Artist Leslie Nolan’

In anticipation of the upcoming solo exhibit August 10 through September 17 at the Athenaeum in Old Town Alexandria,VA, working on some new paintings. So far, they’re all about the drip. Is there such a thing as too much? Perhaps, in fact, probably. But, my plan is to push the limits. Many thanks to Gallery Director/curator Twig Murray and the Northern Virginia Fine Arts Association for the sponsorship.

Athenaeum
201 Prince Street
Alexandria, Virginia

Opening – August 13 Sunday 4-6 pm
Gallery Talk – September 10 2pm with special guest Dr Erich Keel (former head of Education at the Kreeger Museum)

At Susan Calloway Fine Arts

Serge, 30″x30″, by Washington, DC Artist Leslie M. Nolan

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These newly completed paintings are now available at Georgetown’s Susan Calloway Fine Arts — 1643 Wisconsin Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20007.  http://www.callowayart.com

This grouping of paintings features fresh jazzy figures that have the feel of society on the edge. With  mostly vivid colors and painterly brush strokes, I’ve tried to maintain a blur between the real and imagined.   They have a contemporary aesthetic that’s infused with emotional tension.

As always, ambiguity and ambivalence rule.  All interpretations of these figures remain valid, possible, even probable.  I prefer that my paintings address those things that do not lend themselves to easy description.

Art In Situ

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Selecting the right artwork can be tricky.  It’s always a good idea to see it in a residential setting – a test for tone and style within a room.  I personally like art that makes me think and provides a lively counterpoint to otherwise static elements of furniture.  Some people prefer a more peaceful, languid feeling.  Everyone has a different goal for their personal space.

Regardless of preference, trying something out in the room for size and impact makes sense.  Whether stimulating or calming, a one of a kind, handmade work of art will elevate the area and make it special.  If it doesn’t work, you can always return it to the gallery for another piece that meshes just right with your preferences and objectives.

Here, I’ve displayed some newish pieces at home before delivery to the gallery.  Each makes a unique focal point, but I think they look good together, too.

The Palette Knife

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Corrected Vision 11 by Leslie Nolan Washington, DC Artist

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Corrected Vision 12 by Leslie Nolan

For these two recent paintings I used  scraping tools – palette knives, drywall joint implements, and stir sticks – in the figure, leaving brushwork for the background.

Because scraping results in a less predictable outcome, many “happy accidents” lend immediacy and freshness to the work.  The paints smear together in a totally different way from brushwork, and repeated passes build a texture that lends a rich gravitus of age/history/artifact to what is really a contemporary look.

Also, note the figures are posed in profile, something I generally avoid.  This stiff pose generates a whiff of old-master-hanging-in-a-dark-museum.   It seems void of emotion.  But, combined with scrapes, smears, drips and some wild color, the figure becomes a vessel of possibility.  Perhaps, even intrigue.

 

Washington Project for the Arts

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Washington DC Artist Leslie Nolan Exhibits at WPA Auction Gala

7 Curators +100+ Artists

Saturday, April 9, 2016, 7-11 pm

1333 H Street NW, Washington DC – three blocks from the White House

Cocktails, dinner, curated silent auction, dance party

Fancifully irreverent attire

For tickets, artist & curator info, and more visit http://www.wpadc.org, or contact Nathalie von Veh at nvonveh@wpadc.org