NEW PAINTINGS by Theresa Handy
St. Paul painter Theresa Handy pushes her minimalist landscapes in subtle new directions in her highly accomplished current show. Casting off the moodiness that often made her previous work oppressive, Handy has embraced sky, grasses, birds and even telephone lines as sly subjects in large, beautifully glazed canvases that remain, nevertheless, essentially abstract blocks of color. Texture, light and gesture are key in paintings like Frozen Ground, a diptych that poses a panel of blazing white above a dirt-dark rectangle, or Commute, in which telephone lines rim a long orange canvas that abuts a wide panel of blue sky. Elegantly understated.
Where I grew up, and where I now live, the landscape constantly changes. The light above and the solid Earth below reflect seasonal changes that are brutal and beautiful, stark and sublime.
With my paintings, I explore the interrelationships of art, nature, and spirituality. I share and pay reverence to those elements and events to which I am particularly drawn. Most recently, I have been focusing on the human relationship with the nature. Some aspects of this complex interaction that I explore include the way we love, fear, attempt to control, experiment with and become dependent upon the environment.
My paintings consist of two or more panels some of which incorporate images from books or objects from nature. When the panels are brought together they create my impression of a place I have been, a season, or the transition of seasons, and they speak of our relationship with the land.