VENU #20 Sept/Oct 2013

Page 83

weakest ability as an artist even though she was trained as a painter. Her works convey social issues in a profoundly arresting and haunting manner akin to the German Expressionist artists including the works of Kathe Kollwitz, a painter, printmaker and sculptor of the 20th century. Silverman reaches deeply to convey the power of human suffering through her selected themes of homelessness, hunger, and brutality. This comes through in any medium that she selects.

Barnbougle Dunes, Hole 15

For Nomi, it is not about the paint -- it is about undoing its rigid specificity. Nomi believes that color has value and that you must learn the rules in order to break the rules. Both artists share an expressiveness that is concrete, stable, and emotionally stirring. Color for Fagan creates atmospheres that might be as sparse and alone as that of the American artist Edward Hopper. Rooms by the Sea, a painting in oil on canvas dated to 1951 is one

that Fagan has sat in front of many times -- this is a meditative practice that she compares to the author Siri Hustvedt’s account of sitting in front of Jan Vermeer’s oil painting of Woman with a Pearl Necklace at the National Gallery of Art in Washington for hours at a time in her book, Mysteries of the Rectangle: Essays on Painting. For Fagan, Hopper’s austere atmospheres, suggested through color, texture, and dimension, are compelling aspect of his work that she admires and similarly conveys in her works. About their collaboration Fagan and Silverman both state, “If it didn’t work for us, we wouldn’t do it!” They continue to learn from each other and casually make comments to each other that generally add to the creative process. “Maybe the Buddhist concept of ‘mindfulness’ is an apt description of how we treat one another’s work and ideas,” states Fagan. Fagan and Silverman feel very lucky to have this ongoing collaboration which turns out to be instructive as well as entertaining, and pushes them to work more thoughtfully. Once, when they were painting together, Silverman turned to Fagan and mentioned that Fagan’s upper lip was thinner than depicted, causing Alanna to set down her brush with the slightest hint of disbelief. This collaboration is successful because there is tremendous chemistry between these two exceptional artists.