Michelle Jader, Jessica Dunegan, June 2013
Opening June 7 5-8 pm
Both artists have been celebrated for their unique approachs to painting. Jader custom cuts acrylic panels, stacks them …
Artists Jessica Dunegan and Michelle Jader both create works of art that metaphorically represent freedom of spirit, so it was only fitting that Robert Lange Studios would bring the two artists together for a two women show titled “Release.” Both Dunegan and Jader will be at the June 7 event from 5–8PM, which is open to the public. The work will hang until June 28 and can be seen daily from 11-5PM.
Both artists have been celebrated for their unique approachs to painting. Jader custom cuts acrylic panels, stacks them on top of each other and paints on each layer, while Dunegan pours unsolified resin onto a transparent piece of film and before it drys, swirls in wet paint. The result of Dunegan’s process is that the paint appears suspended in the resin, while the result of Jader’s process the figures appear to be free falling from the forground to the background of the painting. Both artists create works where figures are floating and moving through the composition.
Dunegan says of her upcoming show, “My latest body of work is a visual narration of my effort to reach authentic fulfillment, regardless of external approval and circumstances which are out of my control. My hope is that the viewer is initially drawn to the serenity of the figure, but upon further inspection realizes the significance of the figure’s constantly transforming environment.” She adds, “Movement in water is both graceful and laborious. Contentment is earned through the ability to accept one’s self and others, and that takes work.”
Jader says, “I am exploring those moments when we willingly and unwillingly dive into the next phase of our lives. Whether it’s moving to a new city, starting or ending a relationship, having a baby, or quitting a job, these moments of endings and beginnings are alternately terrifying and exhilarating. Ready or not, we jump, fall or are pushed, and our lives change.”
Jader’s own life has had its fair share of change. She owned her own marketing consulting business for over 10 years and worked with Fortune 500 companies before following my heart and earning an MFA from the Academy of Art University in San Francisco.
Jader says, “With the painting “falling,” I’ve tried to capture that moment when you release yourself from your current path and open yourself up to the next direction that life offers. For me, these moments can be a mixture of competing feelings so I’ve tried to reinforce that tension with energetic and sometimes chaotic brushwork against the serenity of the model’s pose. It’s also a moment that feels like being caught in a limitless free fall. The transparent panels enhance this feeling since the wall color and the background of the painting become one in the same. The figure isn’t bound by a frame, so it appears as though she continues to fall.”
“Transitions like these include the sense of falling, lack of control, and the feeling that anything is possible. We’re vulnerable in these moments and despite our best efforts, our actions seem to be more public than other times in our lives. To capture these feelings and enhance the feeling of motion, I paint a series of images on semi-transparent, acrylic panels. I also take gymnasts and dancers to trampoline parks. The photos I capture of them jumping and diving provide the dynamic reference images I need for my paintings,” said Jader.
The piece “Fade Into You” exemplifies Dunegan’s desire to create movement in water, she says of the piece, “The elements of reflection, water, and floating in “Fade Into You” convey the true power of internal struggle and vulnerability. We all go through periods of instability and tension, but the courage to assess, recover, and change is beautiful.”
Dunegan says of working with Jader on the exhibition, “I think Michelle and I use unique materials and combine them in innovative ways to convey depth and movement. We spoke in the initial stages of preparing for the show, and discovered that not only do we share distinctive processes, but we were in similar places emotionally and both wanted to focus on the theme of “release”.”
Jader adds this to say about pairing up with Dunegan, “I believe RLS paired Jessica Dunegan and I together because we both experiment with presenting the figure in a new, multi-layered way. Jessica builds up layer after layer of epoxy resin and acrylic paint to create physical dimension and depth. I paint different images of the figure on multiple layers of semi-transparent acrylic panels and stack them one in front of the other. We both approach the figure using non-traditional materials and the result is a contemporary approach to a traditional theme. We also both also go to extreme lengths to get the photo reference images that we need for our paintings. Jessica spends hours underwater and I spend hours jumping around at trampoline parks.”