Claire Sherman: West Ridge
Claire Sherman’s paintings of exposed islands and chaotic forest interiors challenge us to encounter unpredictable, wild nature through the emphatic materiality of paint. Existing in tension with landscape archetypes, the paintings, like the exhibition’s title, evoke specific places that could also be anything, anywhere.
Sherman distorts scale, color, and perspective to create “unraveling environments.” Branches bowed by fringes of moss sweep across the canvas and plunge back into space. Angular limbs appear silhouetted amidst the searing blues and agitated brushstrokes of the night forest beyond. In these works, the artist’s approach to subject matter and paint handling finds a parallel in her interest in epiphytes—plants that grow on top of one another in the tree canopy.
As Grabner writes, “Landscape, albeit a traditional genre, has become a difficult category of engagement in contemporary painting simply because its pictorial limitations are nearly impossible to explore anew. Yet Claire Sherman is dedicated to landscape’s potential, and her large, complex compositions effortlessly depict the logic of the natural world while also tumbling into disorientating abstraction.”
This catalogue was published in conjunction with the artist's exhibition West Ridge at DC Moore Gallery, featuring full-color illustrations of works by the artist, with an essay by Michelle Grabner.
Published by DC Moore Gallery, 2016, paperback, 25 pages, 10.5 x 8.5 inches.