Addington Gallery is pleased to present “Off the Grid: Paintings by Jeff Hirst, Lisa Pressman, and Marissa Voytenko” Opening Reception Friday, July 13 at 5pm – 9pm at Addington Gallery, 704 N Wells St., River North, Chicago. 312.664.3406 AddingtonGallery.com
This exhibition brings together three artists whose work is noted for its sensual surfaces, structural compositions, and a desire to reconcile the two through formal experimentation. The work is especially notable for the way it powerfully communicates psychological states, emotional responses, and ethical concerns.
Jeff Hirst combines translucent encaustic surfaces and silkscreen printing, a fusion not often seen (he pioneered the approach), literally building his paintings on deeply beveled supports. These paintings are full of rich counterpoint: The chunky, deep-profile, irregularly shaped structures look strong and weighty, but the light, translucent wax surfaces are like atmosphere, punctuated by rhythmic pattern and breezy passages of color. In spite of the visual weight of these objects, the reverse-bevel that Hirst employs in their construction and the atmospheric, shimmering wax surfaces suggest the illusion that these works are hovering, light as air, parallel to the wall. Smart, sensual, and packed full of evocative content, these paintings confidently engage both body and mind.
Lisa Pressman is a powerful painter, and a leading practitioner of encaustic painting. Her work focuses on a visual synthesis of immediate emotional responses and stored, personal memory. While these paintings are deeply layered, and visceral, yet somehow they always remain fresh, and vivid. Pressman is a true colorist, and when her works are encountered in person one is captivated by how she speaks the language of color, and how clearly one can hear her voice. Her lush paintings are capable of taking us on long journeys. Her surfaces are fluid, spontaneous, idiosyncratic, and masterfully realized.
There is a poetic, vulnerable beauty found in the abraded surfaces and measured, almost-regular patterns of Marissa Voytenko’s paintings. The tactile intimacy of her work functions like a whisper, drawing us closer with each subtle articulation. Voytenko considers herself a very orderly person who thinks in grids, so she appreciates how the encaustic medium pushes her beyond precision. Her work is typically centered around structures – squares, grids, blocks and towers – and occasional text and drawn images. While her influences are wide, her drive to create is often fueled by current psychological and ethical concerns in society
Off the Grid opens Friday, July 13, 5-8pm.