One is Always Forgotten
Ariel Freiberg and Helena Wurzel
Friday, March 2, 2012 to Sunday, April 22, 2012
Laconia Gallery is pleased to present a exhibition of two talented and dynamic painters: Ariel Freiberg and Helena Wurzel. These artists use figuration to create scenes of solitude, power, intimacy or vulnerability that implicate the viewer as either intruder or audience.
Whether exaggerated and mythological or private and introspective, these artists convey a confident understanding of gender and ways of depicting female sexuality in the 21st century. Both use of nude and seminude figures, pay attention to the social demands of appearance (especially shoes) and have an ease with the use of eroticism and fantasy to create imaginative dialogs.
Freiberg often isolates and elevates a central figure using dramatic atmosphere and perspectives familiar from the works of Giovanni Battista Tiepolo. Provocative stances set up scenes that are larger than life through a use of symbolism and iconography. In the newest works close-up views of violent garden tools are framed by detailed layering of strongly contrasting color to dramatize an interaction between gendered everyday objects.
Wurzel works closer to home in her intimate paintings and collages, establishing a confident female persona through self-portraits and interiors which reveal the rituals and interactions of domestic life. The tonal range and use of grey as a thematic color sets the emotional tenor of these works. Tight compositions and foreshortened views down the body or into a mirror underscore the autobiographical nature of this series.
Together these two artists demonstrate the combination of craftsmanship, imagination and conceptual rigor regularly presented by painters of all types while emphasizing the power and prestige that talented female artists have gained over the last generation.
– James Hull, Curator