Ethan Caflisch, Carmen Mcnall & Erin Zhao
The Color of Balance
Dates: September 6 - October 12, 2019
Reception: Friday, September 6 | 6-8 PM
Glass Rice is proud to present The Color of Balance, a group exhibition of new works by Ethan Calisch, Carmen Mcnall and Erin Zhao. The artists featured in this exhibition focus acutely on form, color, material and the process of coalescing these points through instinct. Color, a pervasive language, plays a central role in viewing art; its ability to enrich one’s state of mind, awaken a distant memory with newfound iridescence, or instill moments of deeply hued feelings can quite literally give life to inanimate objects. However, despite the rich value color can bring to the table, even the brightest will dim without balance.
For this show, Ethan Caflisch has created five new paintings on raw canvas as a part of his ongoing series, I Cant Wait To Be With You Forever. Each painting, equal in size, consists of three solid colors, no shade ever repeating itself. The saturated pools of color meet in the middle of the canvas, one placed on top of the other in three distinct layers without interruption, slightly billowing as a singular form; inhaling and exhaling. In this series, Caflisch dives into an exploration of relationships, relying on a delicate balance between color and form to breathe life into the materials and concepts.
In her most recent body of work, Carmen Mcnall has produced a collection of hand carved and painted wood panels in varying dimensions. Each is inspired by the significance of organic items she has accumulated from places she holds profound connections to, collecting the essence of a place within an object. She meticulously uses mark making as a tool to reflect on the importance of these places and items, the relationships that inherently fasten her to them, and the empowering qualities these items retain. Mcnall balances colored patterns bound by ellipses against stretches of pure pigment, suspending the objects in saturated space, and accentuating grooves through carving.
Erin Zhao is particularly inspired by pebble and rock imagery. For this show, Zhao continues this exploration through two mediums, one being a series of linocut monoprints each uniquely embossed, and interactive plexiglass paintings. The monoprints in this show consist of five colors in hues of green, blue, yellow, brown and orange. The colors are carefully layered on top of one another, creating a rhythmic composition with new shapes and shades revealing themselves within the positive and negative spaces. The plexiglass paintings similarly mimic this approach. She stacks geometric shapes littered with transparent spaces in the form of ovals, with some including circular cutouts attached to the surface layer with the ability to spin on their own. The cyclical nature of the shapes parallel our relationship to memory and identity; a moment, sensation or idea reflexively feeding into the next, similar to a Venn diagram.
In The Color of Balance, Caflisch, Mcnall, and Zhao each present individualized and distinct styles rooted in the fundamental importance of color in how we process and digest abstract art; challenging the viewer to draw keen conclusions with less visual information, while also instilling a subliminal sense of balance.