In Our Gallery: Penelope Barringer’s FLORA{L}


Penny Barringer, Flora{L}. Monotype.


The new exhibit of monotypes by Penelope Barringer marks both artistic and stylistic departures for the Arlington resident, a co-founder and director of the printmaking shop Discover Graphics Atelier since its opening in 1983. The show’s title, “FLORA {L},” suggests the ambiguities raised by the artist’s approach to the complex problems by bringing together the subjects of flowers, whether as objects of art, or objects for study, or simply as blooms.

The color possibilities of the monotype process are a natural choice as a medium, but the addition of “found” textures helps at times to further the distance from “flower picture” that Ms. Barringer’s work manages to achieve. The development of several quite different series of images, each of which force comparisons by the viewer among the related items in the group, suggest by their juxtaposition some of the imaginative possibilities of floral inspiration.

The work in “FLORA {L},” like most of the artist’s work, reaches out from a base in natural forms towards the abstract. For Ms. Barringer, like the English artist-poet William Blake (capitalization and punctuation are his):

… to the Eyes of the man of Imagination Nature is Imagination itself.

As a man is So he sees. As the Eye is formed such are its Powers.

You certainly mistake when you say that Visions of Fancy are not to be found in This World.

To Me this World is all One continued Vision of Fancy or Imagination.

On view July 2 – August 31, 2014. Studio 325, Main Gallery. Opening reception 2:00 -4:00 pm July 13.

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