Sunday, January 22, 2012

PRESS RELEASE: Julia Shirar in Gallery II at Vermont Studio Center in Johnson

People in Places is a collection of Julia Shirar's most recent paintings and drawings, on exhibit from February 11th through March 10th in Gallery II at the Vermont Studio Center, Johnson. There will be an opening reception beginning at 7PM on February 11.

Gallery II is located on the side of the Wolf Kahn Studio Building at the Vermont Studio Center, 80 Pearl Street in Johnson.

Shirar says, “In the tradition of the 19th century itinerant painter, I’m recording a small part of our time through portraiture and landscape, depicting people and places. It is an on ongoing documentation, a subjective partial record of right now. The Gallery II exhibit has work from New York, Oakland and Los Angeles, California and a little bit of Vermont.

Julia Shirar received a BFA in Painting from Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia, PA and an MFA in Painting from California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland,CA . She lived in Oakland for 17 years, where she was a Senior Adjunct Professor in the Film department at California College of the Arts and a Sound Designer for feature films to support her painting.

She started thinking about documentation through portraiture and landscape as a reaction to her close work with the simulacra of film, and the isolation of her profession. She saw anew the value of human interaction as a means through which to collect history and started documenting Oakland. In 2008 she was a resident at Vermont Studio Center, where the work began evolving into a collaboration with the sitter, involving props and symbolism, a loose narrative of our time with hints of the apocalyptic. She relocated to the East Coast recently as a caretaker for a funeral home in Queens, and returned to VSC to make one of the portraits in the show of Dan Allen. Because of the scale of the more narrative paintings, this is the first chance she’s had to show them.

Images: Top - Dale; Bottom: Mick