Opening Reception on Friday, July 6, 2018 - 5:00 to 8:00 p.m.
Show will run from July 6 - 27, 2018.
Wisconsin artist Victoria Bein’s highly creative and imaginative pastel drawings will challenge your mind.
Over the past five years Victoria’s work has been selected for numerous group and solo exhibitions throughout Wisconsin and the Chicago area. At this years 61st Annual Beloit and Vicinity Exhibition, Victoria won the Peoples Choice Award for her drawing “Manipulation Station”. She is also included in the very competitive Rockford Midwestern Biennial 2018, juried by Chicago gallerist Aron Packer.
Although Victoria has some formal training, her intuitive approach is akin to the Outsider Artist. Her process begins with a simple line drawing.
Bein: “I just start doodling, much like the automatic drawings of the Surrealists, allowing my unconscious mind to create the content.”
These sketches are the foundation of her work and most of the original lines are retained in the final piece.
Bein: “I tell stories that are not necessarily in a known language; often they appear to me as a puzzle or mystery to be unveiled. When I finish a work I sit and view it, much like the audience would, and let it speak to me. It’s like having a dream, waking up, and trying to understand it.”
She encourages the viewer to create their own story from her work, and through this process, perhaps uncover their own unconscious mind.
As the viewer spends time with her drawings, they will discover hidden content and an incredible amount of detail. In her figurative work she often combines human and non-human animal forms, projecting a blend of whimsy and dis-ease. At first glance, the work may seem playful, but with a closer look you will often find a serious, darker narrative.
Victoria speaks about her work as a process of integrating the conflicts of both her inner and outer world. Information from her dreams, imagination, and memory is gathered and organized, creating new realities and patterns, perhaps more truthful than our commonly recognized ones. Although the iconography is personal, the resulting images tap into a collective unconscious.
Bein: “I find the distorted forms that spontaneously come out in my sketches express more deeply how I feel than if I were to realistically render the image, although I will sometimes do more traditional landscapes or portraits between works as a palette cleanser of sorts.”
Working with pastel and carbon pencil on paper allows her to emphasize linear marks, ranging from bold to barely visible, and to build a rich surface of texture and shading.
Bein: “I’ve always loved drawing, even the way the pencil sounds as it moves across the surface of the paper, or the musical taps of the pastel sticks making marks.”
Key to her vision and compositions are palette restriction, layering, and the creation of transparency within forms. Broken shapes and simultaneity reveal cubistic influences, while the frequent use of flat outlined shapes give her work a graphic feel. Each final piece reflects her journey, blending representational elements with abstraction, finding unity and harmony in the chaos of fragments.
All of Victoria’s work is framed with acid-free mats and foam board, and TruVue 99% UV protected glass.
First Friday Gallery Exhibits
The first Friday of each month we host a Gallery Opening from 5 - 7 pm. Join us!