Erin Cone’s latest paintings will be shown in the exhibition Boundless at Nüart Gallery in Santa Fe, New Mexico, October 12 through 28.
Cone continues to strip the narrative from her paintings of female figures in high fashion dresses, isolating them in negative space—exercises in form, color and line.
She says, “I create a deliberate push-and-pull between near-photorealistic detail and my own vocabulary of visual glitches that challenge that very realism. This duality is central to my work and allows the figures I paint to remain wholly representational while functioning abstractly—evoking emotion without defining it.”
Plato divided the world into the material world of appearances and the perfect world of pure form. He taught that everything in the material world is only a copy of the perfect form in the perfect realm—that we had to have had knowledge of perfection before our birth and recall the experience in this world.
Cone refines her ideas to their essentials, maintaining the female form in shape-defining couture, of the day, yet timeless.
In her painting, Reprieve, the dress hugs the figure and becomes an abstract form as it progresses from shoulders to floor. The model’s elegant gestures occur within the form of the dress and the shape of her figure,
self-contained, rather than expressive.
Cone’s “glitches” have derived from digital pixilation in the past. They are combined with the material of their creation in Effusion 2 as the paint flows away from the artist’s control at the model’s lips and the back and bottom of her dress. The form disintegrates, destroying the illusion of perfection, becoming, literally, material.
In both paintings, the models maintain a composed inner world as the imposed roles of the outer world either confine them or disintegrate around them.
2Effusion 2, acrylic on canvas, 48 x 72"2
1Inward, acrylic on canvas, 36 x 36"