ANGELL GALLERY is proud to present MIDNIGHT BLOOM, a solo exhibition of new paintings by the latest addition to the gallery’s roster, Toronto-based painter, ERIN LOREE. The show runs in Angell Gallery’s new location at 1444 Dupont St., Unit 15, from January 8 to 30, 2016. The opening reception is on January 8 from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m.
Suffused with vibrant colour, swirling with the rhythms of life, the richly expressive paintings of Erin Loree draw you in and don’t let go. While the field of abstraction has become densely populated, truly original voices in this contemporary art mainstay are relatively few. Erin Loree is one such voice, and this breakout show will prove it.
Loree came to abstraction by accident – literally. Originally a figurative painter, she began discarding references and working more freely in reaction to the constraints of a broken foot. The shift in focus from image to material was liberating, and as process moved to the fore, Loree’s unique artistic vision emerged.
While influenced by the painterliness of Francis Bacon, the dramatic chiaroscuro of Caravaggio and the muscular vigour of Michelangelo, Loree is equally responsive to the cadences of the natural world. An artist’s residency that brought her to the Peruvian Amazon jungle was a key factor in developing her appreciation of the latter. “I was able to witness the cycles of life, death and rebirth in the natural world and I began to see nature's mysterious processes as mirroring my own inner states and transformations,” says the artist. Loree’s philosophy recalls that of Chilean Surrealist, Roberto Matta, who developed the concept of “inscapes”, or landscapes of the mind.
With Midnight Bloom Loree has taken yet another step forward by working on large scale canvases that give her complicated surfaces an expansive sense of depth. At monumental scale these paintings take on a sublime landscape-like quality, while steadfastly maintaining their abstract nature. Working intuitively, applying paint, scraping it off, then going back in with brushes and assorted tools, the artist juxtaposes broadly painted verdant swirls that rise and fall with thickly impastoed elements, staccato strokes, areas of pure, glowing colour, and meditative white spaces. The sense of churning chaos, held in perfect balance yet ever on the verge of collapse, captures the quality of impermanence that Loree views as an essential aspect of life.
Erin Loree graduated with a BFA in Drawing and Painting from Ontario College of Art and Design University, where she was awarded the 2012 Medal for Drawing and Painting. Since graduating she has participated in numerous group shows including the influential Kim Dorland-curated I ♥ Paint 2 at Angell Gallery in Toronto, and Younger Than George: 12 Painters in their 20s and 30s at George Lawson Gallery in San Francisco. Solo exhibitions include GRIT/SHEEN at Project Gallery in Toronto and Become The Sky at Galerie Youn in Montreal. Loree’s work has been featured in Beautiful Decay and the Huffington Post.