Painting & Engagement: Georganna Lenssen in “Menagerie”

West Branch Gallery
Mar 25, 2015 5:54PM

Lenssen’s paintings are the product of an engaged process. “With painting one has the opportunity to go inside oneself. One can uncover his or her unconscious or non-verbal intelligence, so to speak, and his or her unconscious sensibilities,” explains Lenssen. “Painting is an extremely engaging, interactive and exciting process for me.”

For Lenssen, the act, the experience of painting is almost as important of the painting itself. As viewers, we see the handiwork of her efforts. If we apply this understanding to her paintings of horses, parrots, bobcats, and other animals, we can see these paintings as something more than pictures of animals. Like the painting ChefBobcat is a relaxed and intimate portrait of her subject. In nature, the spotted fur acts as a camouflage for the cat, but in Lenssen’s painting, expressed as wide daubs of paint, they become the animal’s personality. The bobcat’s mouth is nearly lost in the rendering of its fur which serves to highlight the animal’s nose and piercing yellow ochre eyes.

“My paintings often develop into something I would never have expected at the start. Something unconscious charts the process and the piece moves into unplanned, surprising directions,” said Lenssen. “I feel painting should be an interactive process between painter and painting.”

Georganna Lenssen lives and works in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. She has a Four-Year Certificate in Painting from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Her work has been shown extensively in Pennsylvania and Vermont. Among her many prizes and awards, Lenssen won the 2014 Penn Medicine Best of Show Award at the Wayne (Pennsylvania) Art Center Members’ Exhibition. In 2013, she was named Fordham University’s Artist of the Year and her work won Best Animal Personality Depiction in the exhibition “Reigning Cats and Dogs” at the Wayne Art Center. Georganna Lenssen’s work has been discussed in Broad Street ReviewArtMatters,Philadelphia Style Magazine, the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Pew Charitable Trusts Magazine, and the Philadelphia City Paper.

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