Watching Shawn Marshall’s work over the last few years, it is interesting to observe that she has moved away from abstraction and into a sort of updated impressionism. Most artists move towards the abstract, finding that it emerges from the representational, yet Marshall has allowed a looser, more spontaneous approach to her mark making to embrace a more robust and muscular reading of the landscape.
Landscape has always been important to this artist: “ (It is) an outlet to let go of preconceived ideas and rules of how I interpret and portray the world,” she states. “Using palette knives and brushes, I work to create atmospheric depth on the canvas with a focus on the horizon. Though the horizon can never be truly be reached, it is a metaphor for hope, wonder, and perseverance.”
Where Marshall once isolated the horizon as a point between two adjacent fields of color and texture meant to show earth and sky, she now articulates detail in the ground plane that force depth and distance. Where we once read the surface texture in two dimensions, we are now welcomed into a definable space of rough and treacherous terrain. And the shift does not feel a repudiation of her previous exploration of the fundamentalism of identifying the geometry of natural forms; rather Marshall seems to be led by the medium and a new vigor in her practice that has enabled a retrograde point of view.
Marshall is a member of ENID, a collective of women sculptors named in honor of Enid Yandell. In recognition of her 150th birthday the group has participated in two recent exhibits. But that was only the beginning of what is clearly a fertile time in her practice, and her work will be available for viewing in several locations in the coming weeks:
October 2019 - September 2020 - Selected Artist "Art in City Hall", City Hall, Louisville, KY
June 2019 – December 31, 2019 - Selected Artist for the AC Hotel - Louisville, KY
November 3 – December 26, 2019 - Mazin Juried Exhibition, JGallery, JCC, Louisville, KY
November 8-10, 2019 - A painting and photo exhibition of work by artist Shawn Marshall and Emmy Award winning filmmaker Michael Fitzer, Tim Faulkner Gallery, Louisville, KY.
November 14, 2019 – January 11, 2020 - 3rd Annual Small Works Juried Show - Art Room, Fort Worth, TX
Marshall’s work is in numerous private collections including PNC Bank, Pittsburgh, PA, Commonwealth Bank, Louisville, KY, and the University of Kentucky Medical Center, Lexington, KY.
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
Moremen Contemporary (Louisville) www.moremengallery.com
New Editions Gallery (Lexington),www.neweditionsgallery.com
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Written by Keith Waits. Entire contents copyright © 2019 Louisville Visual Art. All rights reserved. In addition to his work at the LVA, Keith is also the Managing Editor of a website, Arts-Louisville.com, which covers local visual arts, theatre, and music in Louisville.