First Street Gallery is pleased to present Perception and Memory, an exhibition of new paintings by Mary K. Connelly. For the last three years Ms. Connelly has been working on a series of narrative paintings exploring the relationship between perception and memory. These rich and carefully orchestrated images of family history alternate between the artistís memory and the construction of memory mediated by the fiction of the family snapshot.
Photographs of the artist's parents are referenced in the compositions epitomizing the mixed messages of the post-World War II era and the promise of the American Dream. Below the surface appearance of happiness and prosperity lie the darker truths of unspoken anxiety, longing and loss. The paintings use multiple 'frames' creating unexpected juxtapositions that add discontinuity and tension to the narrative. Connelly states that 'the trope of illusionist painting serves to frame my meditations on loss and the truth of impermanence'. This ongoing body of work is a memorial project reflecting on the loss of the artistís parents in 2000.
Mary K. Connelly was raised in Belleville, New Jersey. She earned her BFA in painting in at Washington University in St. Louis and received an MFA in painting at Indiana University in Bloomington. The artist is currently an Assistant Professor of Painting and Drawing at the University of Colorado at Denver. Connellyís work was featured in New American Paintings, November Issue, 2004. Recent exhibitions include a three-person exhibition, Womenís Work, at the Fort Collins Museum of Contemporary Art in Fort Collins, Colorado and a group invitational, Go Figure, at the Carson Gallery in Denver, Colorado.
The First Street Gallery promotes their artists with a Gallery Portfolio at absolutearts.com. View more of Mary K. Connelly and other First Street Gallery artists' works at http://galleries.absolutearts.com/firststreetgallery
Mary K. Connelly
A Place to Look From
oil on linen