We are pleased to announce Arctic Abrasions, an exhibition of new work by Elaine Spatz Rabinowitz. There will be a reception on Friday, April 21, 5 - 7 pm.
In 2013, Elaine Spatz-Rabinowitz traveled up the coast of Norway and into the desolate yet beautiful landscapes of the Arctic. Through a hybrid technique melding photography with painting, Arctic Abrasions captures both the wilderness of the far north, and the traces of past and present human industry. Spatz-Rabinowitz captures this terrain with the documentary lens of photography, and then transfers her images to Hydrocal (a dense plaster) and watercolor paper, where she alters and reinterprets them using a variety of methods and materials.
The fissures and disruptions Spatz-Rabinowitz casts into her Hydrocal tablets obscure the clarity of the image, giving each photograph a tactile, mutable layer, creating "photographic images that breathe and speak in the intimate language of surface." She then works into them with oil paint and other media, transforming the content. The imperfections in the image act as a metaphor for the abrasions in the Arctic landscape left by both nature and man. Skeletons of deserted towns puncture the terrain, serrated streaks of earth and cracking ice leave dark lacerations in the exquisite, intensely varied palette of this region. The distinction between natural deformities and the artist's hand blur on the coarse surface of each piece, creating an otherworldly representation of the dissolution and demise of the Arctic.
Elaine Spatz-Rabinowitz is a Boston-based artist who has shown at galleries and museums across the northeast. She has received a number of honors and awards, including a Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship, multiple Massachusetts Cultural Council Fellowships in Painting, and the Arctic Circle residency that was the foundation for this body of work. Her work has been included in several private and corporate collections, including the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Addison Gallery of American Art, and the DeCordova Museum and the Graham Gund Collection.