Joan Baldwin sought new visual territory in her most recent work on view this month at Kingston Gallery. The paintings in The Marshes have a heightened degree of abstraction in comparison to earlier works, with varied brushstrokes and atmospheric areas that appear misty.
The artist also remains true to her unique mode of surrealist expression. Familiar imagery has a twist-things aren’t quite as they seem. With at times a sense of humor, at other times hinting at dark realities that may exist amid conventional settings, the series delves into imagined scenes of wildlife on the Massachusetts shore. Visitors to the gallery this month will see ghostly apparitions of animals in otherwise unpopulated views of the wilderness and creatures living as though no human is watching. They skulk, they flirt, they hunt.
The coastal scenery is realized in sharp detail. Wild beach grasses swirl, their oblique movements accentuating each striking composition. The paintings evoke a sense of mystery that continues in the adjacent Center Gallery exhibition, forest primeval, by Ellen Solari.
Surrealism is in the air this season. Artsy published an article by Alexis Corral about Eight Female Surrealists this week. A terrific Artscope preview published in early May by Elizabeth Michelman describes Baldwin’s particular use of the style. Learn more about Joan Baldwin with with 2015 studio visit post and the press release. You can follow her on Instagram @joan_baldwin.