This week we welcome Lawre Stone. Stone was raised in New Jersey, and remembers painting the iridescent colors of a polluted sky and the oil slicked Passaic River from her childhood bedroom. Images of nature altered by human endeavor continue to inform her work. Stone received her bachelor’s degree in fine arts from Rhode Island School of Design and her master’s in fine arts from the Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts at Bard College. In the 1980s, she moved to Williamsburg, Brooklyn, and established her painting studio among a vibrant community of emerging artists.
Her work is included in numerous collections and has been exhibited nationally in galleries and nonprofit spaces including: Tanja Grunert Gallery, the Ely Center for Contemporary Art, LABspace, P.S. 1 the Institute for Contemporary Art and White Columns. Her exhibitions have been reviewed in publications including, the New Art Examiner, the New York Times, and Art in America. She is currently the associate director of Bard MFA at Bard College, and lives and works in New York’s Hudson River Valley.
“Engaged in a conversation between interior worlds and physical experience, my paintings are a forum for charting tumultuous feelings, and the chaos, colors, and tones of everyday occurrences. The emergency of our time, and existential questions about the future inspire my need to empathize with aspects of the natural world through color, image, gesture and space.
Each painting begins with the establishment of a landscape-like space. Washes, spills and slabs of oil paint construct a space made from color. Backlit and shallow, I’m painting the illuminated middle ground, a space that languishes between the certainty of a vanishing point and the tangible clarity of sharp focus.
The images come from a personal lexicon derived from remembered feelings related to my observations of nature. I might draw the petals of a dying flower, a vital organ in distress, a broken chunk of an iceberg, or the sounds of conversations between rare songbirds. Painting acts as my means to explore the unseen forces that propel and impede the structure of growing things. A painting might all at once, suggest a tiny world under a microscope, a vast landscape, or the space of the interior self. A paint heavy brush or the scrape of a knife can abruptly freeze an explosive gesture in space, keeping the emotion intact but not confined. Tethered to abstraction, I’m interested in its metonymic possibilities as a means for expressing forces within.
Systems break down and something new is revealed. Swipes of paint obliterate a form once cherished. The unseen contains both the beauty and the horror of what exists, and what we have done. For me, painting is a portal to this unseen world.” See more of Stone’s work on her website and Instagram page.