REVIEW: Joan Winter in Modern Dallas
July 16, 2020 - Todd Camplin
On July 21st, Holly Johnson Gallery will be celebrating 15 years with an all-women artists exhibition. Another milestone is that the gallery had its longest-running show. Joan Winter had art on the wall from early May to the present and the art will be coming down on August 8th. With such a long-running show, it would be a shame to miss it. I find it easy to call or email the gallery to make an appointment. I urge you to contact the gallery and get out of the house. Art Galleries are social distancing destinations. A place you can visit and still feel safe. This is your moment to have a private art visit, take it.
Winter’s art in particular is worth getting out and seeing. For me, the work seemed to soak up my anxiety. And I believe it will for you too. Her paintings are subtle shifts of color that seem to put you at ease. A painting like First Light looks atmospheric. The yellows seem to float and hang there on the surface. The painting Solis, which is displayed in the front window, is also yellow. It is a long canvas that as you walk by the work you begin to see the shift and changes in paint thickness and color saturation. It was a real treat to experience. I think her intent is to tap into your spiritual self. Look deep into the paintings. Spend time and reflect on your life while soaking in the colors.
These are not just emotional works. In Winter’s paintings, you begin to understand that she has a strong understanding of color theory on the level of Josef Albers. Maybe surpassing Albers, because Winter also considers and studies world cultures and how societies relate and interpret colors. In particular, Winter has talked and wrote about her attraction to the Japanese use of colors. I am also reminded of Rothko because Winter is interested in creating images that allow the color to float and hang there. Unlike Rothko, she has parred down the image so there isn’t the interaction of colors which can cause some tension in his work.
Winter’s prints are more energetic with splashed shapes. She keeps it simple with her color choice. The themes of these works are generally one color expressed in different saturations. She uses a spit bite etching process, which is basically painting acid on an aquatinted plate. I love how the spots capture varying degrees of color. I would love to see her make one of these prints. Also included in the show are some of her sculptures and digital prints.
Catch Joan Winter’s show before it comes down and don’t forget the upcoming exhibition, Back & Forth Celebrating Women and our 15th! The group show includes Anna Bogatin Ott, Rebecca Carter, Theresa Chong, Dornith Doherty, Raphaëlle Goethals, Misty Keasler, Ana Esteve Llorens, Michelle Mackey, Kim Cadmus Owens, Margo Sawyer, Kim Squaglia, Gael Stack, Jackie Tileston, and Joan Winter. I have fortunately been with Holly Johnson for 10 years and I count myself in good company.Download Article (PDF)
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