The Ladder Series Paintings; Sometimes a ladder is only a ladder: no doubt about that. And yet, in the ladder series of artist Michael Dolen, ladders often suggest a good deal more than practical devices or visual props. They call to mind not just the standard ups and downs, ascents and descents but a wide range of human experiences: loss and gain, ambition and disappointment, risk and ambivalence.
"AN AFTERNOON AT THE SHORE:THE LINEAR SERIES"
Three linear female figures, and a bird; all over-layering a boardwalk with the sea in the background... The linear forms are structured to appear over two floral wallpaper patterns. This work is my attempt to give the viewer an opportunity to reassess their sense of illusionistic and abstract space, and to hopefully challenge their visual assumptions.
"TRAVELS:" This work was completed after returning to Saratoga Springs, ( my home and Studio 1999-2015). The work is based on the drawings I had done during visits to Mexico, Rhode Island, and the Adirondacks.
I attempted to convey and encapsulate my travels to the viewer, with a sense of varied playful and serene environments. Landscapes, still-lifes, food and flower arrangements; all interrupting, and flowing into each other, providing improbable visual interactions and conjunctions.