In Distillation of Space, Rhonda Gates’ paintings build on the legacy of landscape painting and human’s psychological distancing from the natural world. She utilizes architectural-based grids and geometric shapes to organize and present her subject matter – the poetry of air and light, flora and fauna – suggestive how people choose to be spectators, viewing nature at an arm’s length through windows and devices, instead of seeing themselves as integral participants in nature.
Gates’ exhibit invites you to explore personal connections to fleeting but everyday moments in nature. With vigorous brushwork and thick paint, the nuanced gradations engender a sensuous, tangible quality to space, distance and atmosphere. Graphite lead is incorporated to depict the presence of features that punctuate the atmospheric spaces while fleeting effects of light evolve within an architectural framework of geometric shapes.
The carefully constructed paintings present you with visual structures that reveal unexpected aspects of the landscape and provide a sense of mass to atmosphere. Subtle shifts in color, combined with the physical properties of paint, propitiate the tension between surface and space. Distillation of Space provides an intimate exposure and poignant experience to contemporary landscape painting.