“Painting is a restorative and meditative ‘practice’” – Shawn Marshall
When Shawn Marshall speaks about ‘restorative and meditative practice,’ it is a clue to what lies behind the simplicity of her paintings. Previous work has been more complex compositionally, but the spare and uncluttered landscape form that she is preoccupied with here seems less a document of a time and place and more about an internal mental or emotional state.
“For me, painting is an outlet to release intuitive energy and let go of preconceived notions of self-imposed rules or judgments of how I and my work interpret and portray the world. Though my architectural background and training often manifests itself in my work, it doesn’t constrain the freedom of expression. Using palette knives and sharp edged tools I create a three-dimensional surface on the canvas, always striving to create a balance between the built-up yet refined impasto and the underlying landscape beyond. Painting is a restorative and meditative ‘practice’ as I create what I refer to as ‘inward landscapes.’”
The harmony achieved belies the type training and experience we might assume for an artist coming from the exacting and technical architecture training, and the viewer must ask how much of Marshall’s work is a journey in the opposite direction; the training providing foundation but the action of painting a break away from that rigor and formal discipline to achieve a peaceful resolve.
Professionally, Marshall has worked as an Architectural Designer for several years, but most recently has taught at public schools in the Louisville area, including her current position as Visual Arts Teacher at North Oldham High School in Goshen, KY.
Marshall is a member of PYRO Gallery in Louisville, and recently was included in two group exhibits, Selfies & Self-Portraits: 21 C Artists… at Viridian Artists Gallery, New York, NY, and The Modern Landscape at New Editions Gallery, Lexington, KY. She will be having a solo exhibit at Craft[s] Gallery & Mercantile in March 2018.
Shawn Marshall will be participating in the 2017 Open Studio Weekend, sponsored by Louisville Visual Art and University of Louisville’s Hite Art Institute. Her studio in Downtown Louisville will be open the weekend of November 4 and 5. Tickets for Open Studio Weekend will go on sale October 16. Click here for more information.
Hometown: Louisville, Kentucky
Education: 1992, Bachelor of Architecture, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY; 1996, Master of Architecture, Minor Fine Arts, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY; 2009, Master of Art in Teaching, Bellarmine University, Louisville, KY
Written by Keith Waits. Entire contents copyright © 2017 Louisville Visual Art. All rights reserved.
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