Mindy Bray’s ink and gouache works on stretched paper explore the physical and psychological experience of landscape. Images of mountain environments are reduced to fragmented fields of shape and color that resemble screenprints, and require a slow reading but an expansive awareness. The show closed yesterday at Rule Gallery in Denver, where five large paintings and eight 6 x 6 inch works are framed a larger narrative of how the mind reflects our surrounding environment, accompanied by a site-specific wall mural called Precipice.
Bray sketches with her camera, taking digital images of the landscape, urban and rural, then fragments the images in Photoshop into shapes and forms. She projects these images onto walls or paper stretched like canvas, and meticulously draws then paints the shapes. The wall works use latex or cut-out paper. The paper works are painted with gouache and ink. No matter the scale, Bray explores the ambiguous realm between abstraction and representation, evoking notions of the Western landscape both romantic and unromantic. Bray systemizes our visual experience of “the natural world.” In doing so she reveals art and nature as concrete.
Bray earned her MFA in painting from the University of Iowa, after growing up in Arizona. She relocated to Denver in 2006 and is an adjunct professor in the School of Art and Art History at the University of Denver.
Written by Leanne Goebel // April 23, 2012 //