Phyllis Bramson's 'Small Personal Dilemmas' on View, 9/3-28
More measured in appearance, Phyllis Bramson's latest paintings interject conceits about life. Hermetic juxtapositions employing motifs, vignettes and miniaturized worlds that talk back with capricious irritability, this recent work often plays with well known fairy tales. However, the painted "stories" are more loosely based narratives, which speak about longing, innuendo and clichés. .
These recent paintings are as much about existential disturbances (and slippage between reality and fantasy), as they are about "painterly anxiety". Stressing the idea of looking as a form of intoxication and absorption, the work employs collage interventions and strategies of the hand.
Mostly, Bramson contends she is making paintings which percolate forth life's imperfections, refusing to take decorum all that seriously, or to separate manners of taste from larger questions about 'good behavior'
In Praise Of Folly-Hummingbird Love
2013, mixed media and collage on canvas, 36x36 inches
The Good Companion
2013, mixed media and collage on canvas, 48x48 inches
In the previous body of work, 'Love and Affection in a Hostile World', that led up to the current paintings, Phyllis Bramsonused images that are infused with lighthearted arbitrariness and amusing anecdotes about love and affection, in an often cold and hostile world. Mostly, she is making work that percolates forth life's imperfections. The paintings are reactions to all sorts of sensuous events, from the casual encounter to highly formalized exchanges of lovemaking (and everything in between). Miniaturized schemes, which meander between love, desire, pleasure and tragedy; all channeled through seasonal changes. Burlesque-like and usually theatrical incidents, that allow for both empathy and "addled" folly, while projecting capricious irritability with comic bumps along the way.