In preparing for her latest exhibit, Hester Ohbi has been drawn to making disparate marks, shapes, and fleeting lines flowing through space. The paintings reveal sprays of paint, passages of color and color erased, connections, and disconnections emblematic of recent unforeseen events in Ohbi’s life – unexpected demands, interruptions, emotional and existential tangles. Eventually these painted fragmented marks seem to come together in cohesion, accepted with gratitude as parts of life’s transience through space. Ultimately notes of distress are integrated with the reprieve of quiet spacious moments in which an inner world may be glimpsed.
Ohbi is an intuitive abstract painter who loves the physical process of painting, using acrylics as well as pastels and collage. Each painting begins with certain colors in mind as well as the amount of energy she wants to convey. After applying initial marks and colors the painting begins to tell her what it needs next. Ohbi engages in constant dialogue with the painting, often viewing it from over ten feet away to take in all the textures of the surface. The process continues until the painting says it is finished, held in a state of sublime tension.
There is always a mystery about the meaning of the painting as it reveals unknown parts of the artist. A quote from Edward Hopper is especially relevant when viewing this exhibit: “If you could say it in words there would be no reason to paint.”
- Friday, Saturday, Sunday: 12pm to 6pm
Foundry Gallery is located at 2118 – 8th Street NW.