Beyond the Sea - Solo Show at Corrigan Gallery

Wave Weaving by Karin Olah, 2018, Mixed Media with Hand-dyed Fabric on Linen, 22 x 28 inches


Beyond the Sea : Abstracting the Colors of the Coast

Opening night: Friday March 2, 5 - 8pm

Corrigan Gallery

7 Broad Street (**new location near the corner of East Bay Street)

Charleston SC 29401


This new collection of paintings are inspired by the colors found in nature along the Charleston coast. Out-to-sea blues, bright beach life, peaceful pink tones of the marsh, and ocean greens inform these abstract paintings. After painting seascapes and landscapes in recent years, I am excited about a return to the non-objective. My new abstracts have a sense of organic lines found in nature and in the sea but with no obvious setting. I can push the layering of brushstrokes and fabric to a place where the material and color are the main focus.

A few of my favorites from this collection of 24 new paintings:

Moving Forward, 2018, Mixed Media with hand-dyed Fabric on Linen, 18h x 24w inches, $1000.

Moving Forward, 2018, Mixed Media with Hand-dyed Fabric on Linen, 18h x 24w inches, $1000.

I painted Moving Forward on my birthday this year. I was thinking about the way water moves behind the boat and the way light and surrounding colors flicker on the surface. The title comes from a super-choppy-seas day on the Charleston harbor when motoring faster through the rough water is the best way to smooth your ride. It's something to consider on a personal note when there is a sea-change in life. This painting is wired to hang vertical or horizontal - depending on which way is "forward" for you.

Tidal Trail Diptych, 2018, Mixed Media with Hand-dyed Fabric on Linen, 28h x 22w inches, $2700.

Tidal Trail Diptych, 2018, Mixed Media with Hand-dyed Fabric on Linen, 28h x 44w inches, $2700.

I love going on walks near the marsh. At low tide, pluffy-muddy trails are revealed to explore. And as the tide fills them in, a reflection of the blue sky gradually unfurls like fabric from a bolt. Sometimes I paint from my photographs, but in Tidal Trail Diptych, the image comes from a memory - and a kind of dreamy place at that. I painted 3 sets of diptychs for the Beyond the Sea collection. There's something wonderful about a pair of paintings - you have the flexibility of hanging them together, giving them space, or separating them (like above twin beds or flanking a doorway). Sometimes I want my scene to go on longer (like a really really good book when I linger on the last chapter) and so I add another canvas to continue spending time in that dreamy place.

Firth, 2018, Mixed Media with Hand-dyed Fabric on Linen, 28h x 22w inches.

Firth, 2018, Mixed Media with Hand-dyed Fabric on Linen, 28h x 22w inches, $1500.

This is a painting on top of a painting. I start with a loose outline either in pencil or pastel. Originally I planned this to be a magenta and navy and white painting. But then the sky turned too bold and the sea went to bold so both were tamed with a layer fabric and a softer shade of blue. The bright moments of underpainting that show through are my favorite bits. I use sand-paper to work through the history of paint and reveal under-layers of color.

Then I build layers of fabric on top. I guess I do a lot of addition and subtraction in my studio. Funny they don't teach math classes at art school. Daring to go purple, pink, and ochre with the foreground seemed like a good idea and the result was worth the dare.

Do you have a favorite? I'd love to hear from you.

I hope you have a chance to see the whole collection here or at Corrigan Gallery - the show is up through the end of March 2018.

Art, Heart, and Gratitude,


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