Artwork by Barbara Weiss. On display January 7, 2016 –February 14, 2016.
A Barbara Weiss painting is infused with light, color, vitality, and movement. This exhibition illuminates and obscures the essence of “home.” In these large-scale oil paintings, memory rubs up against the here and now. Weiss allows her inner child to speak, but in the powerful voice of an accomplished adult. These large abstracts form a personal narrative of a moment in the artist’s life but also convey a very public and universal sense of time and place. Always, these paintings throb with energy and pulse with life. It’s a specific life, yes, but the themes of memory and home, and our relationship to them, touch that which is universal in all lives. As Barbara explains,
“Painting, for me, is a meditation and an expression of a connection to the here and now. It is a way for me to translate my experience of the mysteriousness of existence. I want my work to pulsate, reverberate, to bear witness to the fact that I am here; this is my experience of this moment, this is what I am taking in and letting out.”
Her work has been informed by her experience as an acupuncturist and by the Taoist philosophy that serves as the foundation of Oriental medicine. It has also been influenced by her career as a theater and film designer. Barbara delves into subterranean musings, daydreams, and reveries. Music and movement are among her biggest motivators. Painting is, for her, very physical. She begins with movement and a wide variety of music—show tunes, opera, classical, rap, punk, and Motown to connect to the miracle of being alive. Then comes the germ of a plan—a direction. Ultimately, the overall image takes shape through Weiss’s dialogue with the canvas, a process of painting, waiting, reacting, meditating, and then reacting some more.