APRIL 26-MAY 17, 2013 




Press Release: April 2013 GVG Contemporary, Santa Fe, NM

'Know Place. Like Home.'  Painters: Lori Schappe-Youens & Jennie Kiessling

Painter Lori Schappe-Youens has been on a different quest for home. After living in in the verdant hills and forests of the upper Midwest United States for her first 30 years, she relocated to South Africa in 1992, and spent the next 20 years there, developing a visual language in paint that defined her experience.  This work often includes whimsical imagery which is grounded in an earthy pallet, reflecting the amalgamation and reconciliation of changing homelands.  Laura Jones of South African Garden & Home Magazine writes that Schappe-Youens' compositions are "often painted from an ariel perspective as if trailing through the sky looking down.  She uses delicious color...(and) includes texture from marble dust, wax, and sand.  

Now she has returned to Madison, Wisconsin, and is meditating on the physical, emotional, an existential process of redefining home and a place in a new body of work.  Schappe-Youens explains, "I have always used painting as a means to look both forward and back.  Forward, to what I want and need out of life, and back, to see where I have come from.  I have 'flipped' my life once again- the first time 20 years ago, from the northern hemisphere to the southern, and all that entails- and now I have flipped it back again." 

In describing some of her new paintings, non-objective compositions from which a personal vocabulary of anthropomorphic figures, architectural references, and geographic locations emerge and recede, she goes on to explain: "This 'flipping' is evident in the movement in my new work- arrows showing contradictory directions, hints of a 'Cape Dutch' vernacular- the typical South African architecture, mixed with home type structures of many sorts- nests, buildings, windows into other windows, and doors- both opening and closing." 

Both Keissling and Schappe-Youens reiterate the primacy of home and place in their respective creative processes.  "The fiber of this work is place and lineage," says Kiessling.  "Each is a visual flash of thoughts and feelings as I move through, look, and feel the place in which I live." Schappe-Youens concurs: "I am profoundly in awe of what 'home' truly means to me.  It is leaping out from my innermost core, finding its way through pigment and line and movement into my paintings." 

About GVG Contemporary: 

GVG Contemporary is a gallery showcasing painting, sculpture, fine art furniture, and artist-made jewelry on historic Canyon Road in Santa Fe, owned by husband-and-wife local artist team Ernst Gruler and Blair Vaughn-Gruler.