Anna Socha VanMatre
In Time
In Between
MAY 06 - JUNE 08, 2004



Press Release

A drawing is one of the most sensitive mediums. It provides a direct reflection of the emotions of the artist's vision and the impatience of the hand. In Anna Socha VanMatre's creations, these features are part of an ambiguous and clever game in which the tension between abstraction and reality keeps the viewer in a position of a "hanging interpretation." We seem to be among clouds: black, heavy, graphite clouds. But in fact, we are among emotions. Her latest exhibition entitled In Time In Between (May 6 - June 8) at Gallery | 49 will feature a new monumental multiple-panel installation as well as works from previous series.

Ms. VanMatre is a Polish born artist who constructs graphite paintings on three-dimensional surfaces. Her art has been exhibited in Poland, Germany, Sweden, Russia, Israel, Morocco, and the U.S. This is the artist's second show at Gallery | 49. Critics have described her works as "symphonies of blackness, gray and light" and a significant step in "liberating" the drawing idiom. Titles such as HABITAT, LIMITS, NO, HOPE, METAMORPHOSES, and BEYOND THE EARTH CURTAINS reflect the artist's focus on the relationship between humanity and our environment. It is a world with myriad shades of black and gray, brightened by shafts of white light and a surprising use of color, which illuminates the power of runaway technology, the power of uncontrollable nature, the power of unfathomable inhumanity, yet also the power of beauty. This intimacy has led critics to praise her work as much more than a series of static drawings, but instead "a thing of theatrical character, an interaction between the stage and the audience."

In 2003 Anna Socha VanMatre began a cycle of graphite and pastel works, painted on synthetic paper. The first in the series, In Time In Between - Smoke, is a nine-panel installation arranged in layers creating intricate shadow effects that pull the viewer inside. One is reminded that we are, like it or not, continuously enveloped in a vaporous zone located somewhere between: temporally, spatially, and in terms of our personal journey. The authenticity is confirmed through her individual way of building this half-abstract composition, yet the reality-deprived motifs enhance the imagination and provoke multiple interpretations. The current exhibition points out the historical progression of her unique method and style that explores an endless array of paper and pencil's possibilities. Her free hanging early paintings exploited three-dimensionality through their textures and shadows. Later ones, as monumental as 20 feet, utilized the potential of paper to be torn and cut. Others, some less than two feet and behind glass, achieved the effect through colors and layers. Smoke, with its literally open space, is the most expansive. It is not simply part drawing/part sculpture; rather, it can be considered as an extension of the three-dimensionality that was intuitively central to her earliest works.

The exhibition is on display at Gallery | 49 (322 West 49 St.) from May 6 to June 8. Gallery | 49 is located at 322 West 49th Street (between 8th and 9th Ave.)
Gallery hours are Tuesday -Saturday 12 - 6 pm. and by appointment.

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