Karin Waskiewicz - Recent Paintings


PRESS RELEASE: Karin Waskiewicz - Recent Paintings, Nov  6, 2021 - Jan 15, 2022

Karin Waskiewicz creates abstract paintings with intricate marks and atmospheric passages that suggest glimmering fragments of remembered landscapes.  Each panel is thickly built up with many layers of multi-hued acrylic paint, sufficient to accumulate beyond the edges in undulating scallops.  The dry paint is carved using tools traditionally meant for woodworking.  This process creates complex, scored surfaces with both physical depth and shimmering optical effects.  Hidden colors emerge with each notch and slice into the underlayers of paint, and the accumulation of countless numbers of these irregular gestures evokes the flickering light and color of the natural world.  The resulting depictions of space are ambiguous in scale, ranging from microscopic detail to light-suffused vistas.


Waskiewicz is interested in the way memory and time interact with visual impressions, first prompted by the artist's childhood recollections of the ever-changing colors in landscapes around the Allegheny River.  To convey this sense of transformation, Waskiewicz begins a painting by interpreting the physical and emotive elements of an environment into a complex color scheme meant to enhance optical vibration.  These pulsing colors combined with carved surfaces cause the paintings to change slightly with the viewer's gaze, much as the experience of a landscape changes with time.  Fleeting phenomena such as dissolving fog, the intense flash of a lightning bolt, or underwater reflections are recurring sources of inspiration for Waskiewicz.  The current exhibition focuses on subtle changes in light related to the Japanese concept of komorebi, meaning the interplay of brilliance and shade as sunshine passes through treesAs wind moves the trees the negative space between the leaves constantly changes and creates an unfolding experience for the viewer.


Waskiewicz writes of her work:


My goal is not only to capture the way a specific landscape looks and feels, but the complex way they affect our consciousness and resonate in different ways within our memories.  By carving into the layers, I am bringing forward multiple moments in time.  I relate the many layers of my paintings to moments in my own life; as some events stay with us, others remain faint and distant memories. 


Karin Waskiewicz was born in 1988 in Erie, Pennsylvania and received an MFA from the University of Iowa in 2014.  She lives and works in New York City, where she has exhibited in group and solo exhibitions since 2012.