ZieherSmith is pleased to present Allison Schulnik's major oil painting Pelvis Bone at Loch Fannich (Eric's Eye) accompanied by related paintings and works on paper as well as the first edition of her bronze "Centaurette." These pieces are related to her "Nest" series, one of her most personal projects to date which first debuted at Galeria Javier Lopez & Fer Frances, Madrid.
The artist considers this body of work as a journey to her family's roots. She described being "inspired by my family reunion in Scotland during the summer of 2016. It had been 26 years since the previous reunion—a trip which left an indelible mark on my young spirit, and left me longing to return. My entire family—young and old alike— hiked many long miles of untouched wet moss and pungent peat covered terrain to an extremely remote part of the Scottish Highlands. Crossing over small streams, waterfalls, and dozens of sheep, deer, and elk carcasses, we finally reached The Nest, a single-room stone hut my great-great-grandfather built overlooking the eerily dark emerald waters of Loch Fannich. The inconceivably tiny Nest would eventually be home to thirteen children, who have since fanned out into a family tree of hundreds, dotting the globe. Twenty-six years ago, The Nest stood as it always had, sturdy, proud, and humble. Unfortunately this time, only a singed hull of its former glory remained after a mysterious fire returned it to the ground from which it was built. For many of the eldest members of the family, it would most certainly be their final voyage to this magical place."
The Southern Californian artist is renowned for handmade claymation films, porcelain sculptures, and for her “heavily impastoed paintings... that call to mind the comic-grotesque visionary James Ensor.” ( The New York Times). “Schulnik squeezes out paint, playing with it in a comic and childlike affirmation of the transformative potential of colored goo. Piles of glossy pigment take on the quality of relief sculpture. Color is troweled on almost as a kind of protection.” (Time Out New York). Of her last solo show at the gallery, ArtForum stated “her heavily impastoed narrative paintings, which possess the same physicality and rawness of her works in clay, warrant the attention" and has also described her sculptures as possessing "expressionist facture that one sees in plenty of in contemporary clay artworks. But her energy is deadly different."
Allison Schulnik lives and works in Big Sky, California. Solo exhibitions include at the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, Hartford, CT; Laguna Art Museum, Laguna Beach, CA; Oklahoma City Museum of Art, OK; and Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Overland Park, KS, among others. Her films have been included in internationally renowned festivals and museums including the Hammer Museum, Annecy International Animated Film Festival and Animafest Zagreb. She received “Best Experimental Animation” at the Ottawa International Animation Festival and Special Jury Prize at SXSW Film. Her work is in the permanent collections of over a dozen institutions including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) and Museum des Beaux Arts, Montreal.
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