Tag Archives: nature

Mourning Light

by Holly Friesen

An exhibition of recent paintings by Holly Friesen
Les Mots Tremblant, Friday, Dec 16, 5 to 7 pm

The transformation of the heart is a wondrous thing, no matter how you arrive there. ~Patti Smith

This exhibition is dedicated to Walt Pascoe, the love of my life, whose passing from the earth on the solstice of last year has been mourned in the sweetest light possible. The only way my heart could survive this loss was to paint my way through it. After having mourned his absence for a full year I find his presence in everything I see and touch.

I recently attended a month long artist residency program at the Vermont Studio Centre in Johnson, Vermont. This was a transformative experience. I was able to paint day and night in a gorgeous studio without interruptions or distractions. Meals were provided and the interaction with the 50 other attending writers and visual artists was inspiring and stimulating. The first thing I painted was “Good-Bye Kiss”. The reference photo I painted from was taken by a close photographer friend of mine who passed away three months after Walt. This painting allowed me to process a lot of sadness for the loss of both these dear souls. Once this painting was complete I felt released and lighter as though the studio had been blessed with a newfound radiance that was filled with love and gratitude.

 

holly friesen-good-bye kiss

 

To live in this world

you must be able
to do three things:
to love what is mortal;
to hold it

against your bones knowing
your own life depends on it;
and, when the time comes to let it
go,
to let it go.

~ Mary Oliver

I unrolled some large swaths of canvas from a roll that had belonged to Walt, stapled them to the wall and started to paint light filled landscapes of colour and joy. These paintings came bursting forth with a gratitude for life so large it was almost hard to contain it.

 

Unbound Joy / 84" X 70"

Unbound Joy / 84″ X 70″

Mysteries Too Marvellous to be Understood / 72" X 60"

Mysteries Too Marvellous to be Understood / 72″ X 60″

 

I intend to exhibit these pieces un-stretched and unframed, just as they were in the studio. I love the raw edges that seem to extend the painting into the room and allow their energy to spill out into the space around them. I want the viewer to experience the painting  as an expansive invitation to enter the painting with their own heart.

 

holly-friesen-paintings

 

Next I felt as though I was between stories, a liminal space. A story of presence and absence co-existing in one space. A tension filled existence of opposites; movement and stillness, light and dark, colour and neutrality. A space full of potential yet oddly empty. It was at this time I came across a photograph by friend and colleague Melissa Johnston I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I rarely paint from another person’s imagery as I find “image gathering” to be very personal but this one just wouldn’t stop
calling out to me. I contacted Melissa and she very generously gave me permission to use her sublime photo as reference for a painting. “Liminal Space” is the resulting painting and I am grateful for Melissa’s vision that resonated with my own at that moment in time and space.

 

Liminal Space / 36" X 48"

Liminal Space / 36″ X 48″

 

Then came a more subdued palette as I started on a new series of paintings. These works were more modest in size and inspired by a series of photos and memories from a 5 a.m. September morning paddle on Pink Pond in the Adirondacks. As my photographer friend and I waited for the fog to lift we were rewarded with some of the most sublime glimpses  of landscape revealed at whim from behind a shifting veil of mist. This ambiguous vision of the the horizon appearing and disappearing was poetic and dreamlike.

 

Infinite Possibilities / 48" X 36"

Infinite Possibilities / 48″ X 36″

Pink Pond #1 / 12" X 12"

Pink Pond #1 / 12″ X 12″

Morning Offering / 12" X 12"

Morning Offering / 12″ X 12″

Pink Pond #4 / 12" X 12"

Pink Pond #4 / 12″ X 12″

 

The following paintings are several that I have selected from this past year of searching, exploring and reaffirming the interconnectedness of our inner and outer landscapes. The present moment seems to intersect with the past and the future and linear time dissolves into a web of moments.

 

The Present Moment Becomes Long Ago / 24" X 48"

The Present Moment Becomes Long Ago / 24″ X 48″

Dark Water Cove / 24" X 48"

Dark Water Cove / 24″ X 48″

Field Flow

Field Flow

 

My painting practice continues as a form of deep prayer which reconnects me to that which is vital in this life and beyond. Painting teaches me what I need to learn. Like breath, painting has become intuitive and essential to my own survival. I am humbled and awed by this invitation to participate in the Great Mystery through moments of numinous beauty that I am gifted with on a daily basis.

 

Un Peu Perdu dans les Nuages / 16" X 20"

Un Peu Perdu dans les Nuages / 16″ X 20″

When Warmth Fell from the Sky / 24" X 30"

When Warmth Fell from the Sky / 24″ X 30″

Landscape in Motion / 36" X 48"

Landscape in Motion / 36″ X 48″

Yellow Pool of Light / 36" X 48"

Yellow Pool of Light / 36″ X 48″

 

 

holly-friesen-bio-picArtist: Holly Friesen

www.hollyfriesen.com

hollyfriesen@gmail.com

Holly Friesen was born in Saskatchewan, studied Visual Arts at John Abbott College in Montreal and painting at York University in Toronto. After many years of travel and study she settled in Mont-Tremblant, QC and opened ArtBeat Studio where she painted and taught for 15 years. Four summer seasons saw Holly as artistic director and curator of The Art Barn in Mont-Tremblant. In 2010 she was curator and project manager of Ateliers du Village, an artist run gallery in Mont-Tremblant village.  From 2012-13 she worked as the Montreal curator for an online art auction ArtBomb. The artist’s studio is currently based out of Montreal QC where she also works as artistic director and curator of E.K. Voland Art Gallery. Her paintings are collected internationally and part of both corporate and private collections. Holly’s passion is painting vibrant landscapes from the inside out while collaborating with other artists to make art more visible in our everyday world.

Artist Statement:  My work revolves around earth-honoring images that reflect and instill connection to local bio-regions. These images internalize a reverence for the earth and shift the intent from harming the world to living in a mutually life enhancing manner. I learn what I need to know by painting. The more I paint the less separation there is between inner and outer worlds. For me, painting is like deep prayer awakening an inner wilderness that reflects the earth’s landscape; the image is in you and you are in the image. Painting is my breath, beauty my compass and the earth is my body.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HollyFriesenArtist/?pnref=lhc

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/hollyfriesenart/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Holly59

Online Portfolio: https://www.artworkarchive.com/artwork/holly-friesen

 

Abstraction of Poetical tunes

by Dwijen Gupta

Dwijen Gupta-Dance of liberty

Dwijen Gupta-Conversations

Dwijen Gupta-How green was my valley

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Dwijen Gupta-Pvt Exchange

Dwijen Gupta-Ritual

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

When 3 is Company

When 3 is Company

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Artist: Dwijen Gupta

Dwijen Gupta, painter from Kolkata, India, has been painting for over 25 years and has to his credit several solo shows as well as group shows in India and abroad. Dwijen Gupta completed graduation from Govt College of Art & Craft, Kolkata, and has been in the field of fine art for over 25 years and specialized in large water colours and Acrylic on Tussar ( tasaar – special silk) cloth, Paper and Canvas and Mix Media. Awarded as the Best Watercolour Artist, he had accolades and honours.

“Unification of woman with nature” is the basic trait of Dwijen‟s world-outlook. Through his deft artistry, Artist Dwijen Gupta forces the viewer to deliberate on his female-centric compositions. The strong “Indian‟ feel is inflected through an active interplay of facial features as well as postures and gestures enhancing the mood of his frames. What attracts one’s attention is the simplicity of his women. Not surprisingly his “women‟ seem to be cast in a timeless capsule where her position seems defined either as a mendicant, singer, musician or a devotee far removed from this world, introspecting on the act at hand, singing or making music. The figurative compositions elaborated in water colour and mixed media; express the unheeded, unspoken and unsung” as viewed by critics. His latest collection of artworks is titled “Abstraction of Poetical Tunes”.

Contact: dwijen07@gmail.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/dwijen.gupta.5

 

 

Why I Paint

by Holly Friesen

I paint because I have to.  It is like the air I breathe, completely necessary to my brief existence here on earth.  I paint to understand.  Often my mind is far behind understanding what is appearing on the canvas.  There is a body of wisdom that takes over when I hold a brush in my hand.  When I trust this inner wisdom, sometimes I am able to let go and dance with the paint.  I paint to survive.  My deeply felt connection with the earth is my inspiration and the more I listen to the stories within the rocks, trees, rivers, and sky, the more I need to paint.  I paint because I have to.

I like to work as large scale as possible because this allows greater movement and physicality with the painting. I often collage spiral patterned Washi (handmade Japanese paper)  into my work.  For me this adds a random and surprising element that says, “look deeper, there is more going on here than meets the eye.”  The spiral is a fascinating, ancient image and a primal symbol in the history of humankind.

My favorite way to paint is to choose from a rather eclectic music mix and allow the sounds to draw me out of my head and into my body.  As my mind stops chattering, colors and shapes become a visceral language and I respond intuitively following my own breath, heartbeat, and movement from within.

 

Earth Bowl - Overflow / diptych 100" x 60" / acrylic on canvas

Earth Bowl – Overflow / diptych 100″ x 60″ / acrylic on canvas

Crying Rocks / 40" x 60" / acrylic on canvas

Crying Rocks / 40″ x 60″ / acrylic on canvas

Rocks Attending the River / 18" x 22" / acrylic on panel board

Rocks Attending the River / 18″ x 22″ / acrylic on panel board

Nestled / 30" x 24" / acrylic on panel board

Nestled / 30″ x 24″ / acrylic on panel board

Inward Reflection / 48" x 72" / acrylic on canvas

Inward Reflection / 48″ x 72″ / acrylic on canvas

Crying Lake / 16"' x 20" / acrylic on panel board

Crying Lake / 16″‘ x 20″ / acrylic on panel board

Shimmer / 54" x 72" / acrylic on canvas

Shimmer / 54″ x 72″ / acrylic on canvas

Weaving Roots of Time / triptych 48" x 72" / acrylic on canvas

Weaving Roots of Time / triptych 48″ x 72″ / acrylic on canvas

Forest Qualia / diptcyh 72" x 48" / acrylic on canvas

Forest Qualia / diptcyh 72″ x 48″ / acrylic on canvas

Sky Becoming Road / 36" x 48" / oil on canvas

Sky Becoming Road / 36″ x 48″ / oil on canvas

Spirit Island / acrylic on canvas / 24" x 30"

Spirit Island / acrylic on canvas / 24″ x 30″

Rocks in Moonlight / 18" x 22" / acrylic on panel board

Rocks in Moonlight / 18″ x 22″ / acrylic on panel board

Lover's Limbs / 36" x 48" / acrylic on canvas

Lover’s Limbs / 36″ x 48″ / acrylic on canvas

Ever Evolving Earth / 54" x 72" / acrylic on panel board

Ever Evolving Earth / 54″ x 72″ / acrylic on panel board

Telluric Rhythm / 36" x 48" / acrylic on canvas

Telluric Rhythm / 36″ x 48″ / acrylic on canvas

Natura Imaginalis / 30" x 24" / acrylic on panel board

Natura Imaginalis / 30″ x 24″ / acrylic on panel board

Blood of the River God / 36" x 48" / acrylic on panel board

Blood of the River God / 36″ x 48″ / acrylic on panel board

                                                                               

Holly FriesenHolly Friesen

Artist Statement:

My work revolves around earth-honoring images that reflect and instill connection to local bio-regions. These images internalize a reverence for the earth and shift the intent from harming the world to living in a mutually life-enhancing manner.

After 30 years of painting from close observation of the forests, rocks and rivers, I feel I am no longer observing the natural world around me but rather, in a reversal of roles, the natural world seems to be observing me. Direct and spontaneous brushstrokes become intuitive movements that follow breath and echo emotional responses to this living, breathing vitality. Through a dynamic energetic exchange I feel as though I am being held within an intelligent, sentient field that expresses itself through colors, shapes and movement. I am both humbled and awed by this process.

I particularly enjoy the physicality of painting, the intuitive mark making, the hands-on application of collage and sometimes the direct carving into the panel board. They bring me even closer to the work. I enter an unconscious wilderness through my hands and body; a primal, non-verbal process that is rich with metaphor & images. Often as I work vivid dream images arise and replace my rational, thinking brain with sensations and feelings that are experienced physically in my body.

I learn what I need to know by painting. The more I paint the less separation there is between inner and outer ecologies which results in a linking of perceptions with the natural world where attempts to define or control are useless. For me, painting is like deep prayer awakening a reverence for the earth’s inner landscape; the image is in you and you are in the image. Painting is my breath, beauty my compass, and the earth my body.

Check out Holly’s website and online portfolio.

Twitter: @holly59

Email: hollyfriesen@gmail.com

%d bloggers like this: