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BARTON ART GALLERIES Sponsored by the Barton Friends of Visual Arts


JENNIFER O’CONNELL Familiar Places

Sponsored by the Barton Friends of Visual Arts Designed by Gérard Lange

BARTON ART GALLERIES Box 5000, Wilson, NC 27893 252.399.6477


Familiar Places Jennifer O’Connell’s work presents a tranquil harmony in the solidarity of these vibrant domestic interiors.The scenes are of rooms in her colonial home in Hadley, Massachusetts, but rather than depicting these intimate spaces in natural color, the rooms and furnishings are highly saturated – a rich visual symphony where colors are wrought with emotion. Through the color saturation one begins to ponder the emotional state of the artist during the time each painting was executed. This contemplation is reinforced by the sense and evidence of habitation, without actually seeing any people. Despite the vacancy, there is the feeling that the room has been frozen in the midst of action, and the occupants have simply vanished from view. There is a sense of life

and activity, but the scene appears to be a moment in which the artist’s mind may have begun to wander. As rooms are presented repeatedly, one can witness changes in decorating and, therein, the passage of time becomes apparent. Completed over the span of weeks, the compositions reflect natural changes occurring daily. Objects in the paintings appear to have been touched and moved, yet the person responsible is absent. In her working and reworking of the scene, O’Connell’s rooms cease to be mere domestic genre and start to live and breathe of their own accord. In theses paintings, she transforms the images of her unoccupied private spaces into a self-portrait, where not only her life but the act of living is placed on display. Living Room Spector 30” x 50”


Artist Statement

Artist Statement

Obscure, private visions that alienate the mind in daylight, keep a private visions that alienate the mind in daylight, These scenes arewithinObscure, potent mooring me. Inspired by what the mind conjures, keep a potent mooring within me. Inspired by what the perception is influenced by contemplation. Shadows, objects, mind conjures, perception is influenced by contemplation. inspired and byshapes what are gateways to memories. Imaginings mingle with Shadows, objects, and shapes are gateways to memories. perceptions. In dreaming before rooms, I come in contact with Imaginings mingle with perceptions. In dreaming before the mind conjures, transient psychological aspects. Literally and symbolically, the rooms, I come in contact with transient psychological interior space is the self. Literally and symbolically, the interior space is perception is aspects. the self. While nudging perception toward visual metaphor, I seek visual surprise. Visual and conceptual depth intersect through influenced by While nudging perception toward visual metaphor, I seek a back and forth process of direct observation and separation; visual surprise. Visual and conceptual depth intersect reality is the support for suggestion. Under changing conditions, contemplation. through a back and forth process of direct observation paintings are built up piece by piece, seeking compositional and

and separation; reality is the support for suggestion. conceptual resonance. Additively and subtractively, alternate Under changing conditions, paintings are built up piece by descriptions are explored through the medium. Manifestations piece, seeking compositional and conceptual resonance. of human presences emerge; fragments of the many moments Additively and subtractively, alternate descriptions are which build a painting. Through visual search and variety in explored through the medium. Manifestations of human application, the objects are surpassed as symbols and temporal presences emerge; fragments of the many moments evidence remains. which build a painting. Through visual search and variety in application, the objects are surpassed as symbols and temporal evidence remains.


Flannel Shirt 30” x 24”

Cast of Characters 24” x 36”


Dresser Procession 24” x 48”


Homage 30” x 36”


Wintergreen Evening 24” x 24”


Tulips for Charlotte 24” x 28”

A New England Tale 24” x 36”


Glowing Objects 28” x 28”


Lamp Ensemble 28” x 36”


Night Kitchen 24” x 46”


Distant Springtime 30” x 24”

Ripening Light 28” x 42”


Aging Interior 40” x 30”

Out There 24” x 40”


The Search 24” x 30”

Warm Green Breeze 24” x 40”


Bittersweet 30” x 30”


Bedside Attendant 18” x 24”


Sounds in the Eaves 20” x 24”


Jennifer O’Connell Jennifer O’Connell earned an MFA degree in painting and drawing from the University of New Hampshire and a BFA from SUNY Plattsburgh. Additionally, she studied fine art at the University College Chester in England on a Giltz Family Travel Award.After receiving her MFA, she was invited to show in the “Young Talent” exhibition in Washington Depot, CT. Since then, she has been the recipient of numerous awards including an Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation Fellowship, a Vermont Studio Center Artist Residency Grant and Massachusetts Cultural Council Artist Grant through the Northampton Arts Council. She has led public lectures and participated in panel discussions around the Northeast. Her exhibition record includes national and international shows at Fraser Gallery in Washington, DC and the Bowery Gallery in New York. In 2008, she was selected by juror Cynthia Reeves for the New England / New Talent Exhibition at the Fitchburg Art Museum in Fitchburg, MA. Galleries that represent her work include Adam Cave Fine Art in Raleigh, NC, Left Bank Gallery in Wellfleet, MA and Oxbow Gallery in Northampton, MA.


Director of Exhibitions GĂŠrrd Lange Gallery Assistant Bonnie LoSchiavo Gallery Interns Bobby Buffaloe Michelle Perez Ben Yansom Staff Hanna Cannon Alyssa Damroth Briana Frazier Cherise Santoriello Jasmine Tinsley


Jennifer O’Connell Familiar Places Virginia Thompson Graves Gallery Exhibition Dates August 24 – September 18 Opening Reception August 30, 2:00 – 4:00 p.m.

BARTON ART GALLERIES Box 5000, Wilson, NC 27893 252.399.6477 The Barton Art Galleries are located in the Case Art Building, near the intersection of Whitehead Avenue and Gold Street, on the campus of Barton College.

Jennifer O'Connell: Familiar Places  

Exhibition catalog featuring Jennifer O'Connell's Familiar Places at the Barton Art Galleries.