Diaz Contemporary is pleased to present Ilse Gradwohl’s first solo show with the gallery. Based in Mexico City, Gradwohl is known for personal and intimate works that demonstrate an understanding of painting as a two-fold process made up of the artist’s expression and the spectator’s elaboration.
Gradwohl is skilled at allowing colour and form to become a method of transference and communication between herself and the viewer. Her complex, mood-filled canvases prompt imaginative projections on the part of her audience, with spaces of light and colour that conjure images of other realities and provoke affective responses. In much of her work, her initial focus on the materiality of the canvas develops into a visual meditation on aspects of the natural world. According to Luis Carlos Emerich, “everything…in her work appears as knowledge derived from contemplation…a type of knowledge impossible to communicate by any means other than the pictorial, for it is derived from intense experiences that can only be apprehended when projected into the two dimensions of the canvas.”
The title of the show is taken from a children’s poem by R.L. Stevenson, and relates to the adventurous and optimistic early days of abstraction. In a complex engagement with the history of painting, McIntosh emphasizes a spirit of openness and continuation. Her method speaks to the idea that aesthetic development does not have a beginning or an end, but is rather eternally renewing itself. The decisions she makes are formed through a process, and the resulting works have their own internal logic that varies from painting to painting thereby resisting a single strategy.
In this particular series of five large-scale paintings, Gradwhol allows expressive colour and uninhibited brushstrokes to accumulate into a moving, tumbling Marea (Spanish for “tide”). The kinetic images have physical depth and emotional power, and are both forceful and contemplative.
Ilse Gradwohl was born in Austria and educated in Visual Art at the University of Mexico. Recent solo shows include Travesias and Shifting Landscapes at the Drexel Galeria, Garza Garcia in Monterrey, Mexico. She has also been included in numerous solo and group shows at the Museo de Arte Moderno in Mexico City, and the Museo De Arte Contemporaneo, in Merida, Yucatan.