Opening Reception with Carrie Marill
Saturday, January 11th, 2020
Carrie Marill’s paintings seem to extend into a separate dimension, a place of form and color and clean, bright angles in sharp relief. These views of the essential matter of our physical world, organized into startling and compelling patterns, may appear crystal clear to the viewer, but Marill says her paintings are often the result of months and years in which unexpected geometries are allowed to agitate and resolve. In January and February, Lisa Sette Gallery will feature a selection of Marill’s new works, intricately detailed acrylic canvases inspired by the notion of fortifications and barriers—both their protective exteriors and the precious interior spaces within.
Marill's recent focus on walls and thresholds speaks of barriers and preservation, our human instinct to guard and separate, and our present moment of estrangement and division. In Marill’s works, the walls themselves become part of a process of acknowledging the need for guardedness and vulnerability, as well as suggesting the possibility of moving through that barrier in order to access interior truths. In some of these works, delicate vining flora can be glimpsed within a burnished bronze enclosure. Other paintings contain masonry-like surfaces, expressed in glistening lines with the exquisite clarity and patternwork that is a hallmark of Marill’s endeavors. Enveloped within these “walls” are likely hidden initial paintings, or series of paintings that are a foundational, if concealed, part of the artist’s process.
“I wanted to show beauty in the depiction of vulnerability, but also to guard it.”
The use of discrete strands of gold and bronze paint is a motif found throughout Marill’s work, and in the paintings at Lisa Sette Gallery this January, metallic hues become a primary medium, symbolic of the alchemical aspects of creative work: “I wanted to create a mosque or church-like space inside the gallery, all of the paintings glowing with patterning in gold or bronze, to create these almost sacred objects.”
Marill recently studied Moroccan patterning at a traditional painting school in the UK, and remarks, “the uses of color, space, pattern, and reduction in Middle Eastern and Asian painting have always interested me. There’s meditative sensibility that resonates with me and is something I try to integrate into my pieces. Ultimately, I see the world through a patterned lens, and what I’ve learned is that much of the world sees through this lens as well.”