Helene Appel focuses on the unassuming materials and sights of daily life—a rumpled blanket, bits of onion on a cutting board, plastic sheeting, knitting—drawing out their delicate, intrinsic beauty in photorealistic paintings that border upon abstraction. By emphasizing textures and patterns, she plays with genres, crossing the artful illusionism of still life painting with the Minimalist emphasis on the flat finiteness of the picture plane. Working primarily with watercolor, acrylic, and oil, and always on unprimed canvas, Appel paints to scale, resulting in works as large as a capacious bed sheet and as intimate as tiny, torn lettuce leaves. While her trompe l’oeil images look like the real thing, her intention is not to trick the eye. Rather, Appel aims to explore what she sees as the reciprocal relationship between the painted subject and the act of painting itself.