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Artful Breath On Display

My solo show at the Milton Art Bank was titled Inhale Here. Exhale Now.

exhibit photos credit: Jeffery Burrell Photography and Milton Art Bank

The purpose of art is to make the invisible visible.

-Paul Klee

Inhale Here. Exhale Now., Amanda Marko’s solo exhibition, is a deeply felt personal exploration of her meditation practice and the struggle to stay focused in this increasingly complicated and noisy world.

Her use of oil and collage along with vigorous gestural mark-making embodies the struggle to stay focused as she adds subtracts and scrapes paint from the canvas or panel substrate: a push and pull, back and forth erasing action that mimics breathing.

Breathe in. Breathe out. Breathe in.

Marko’s non-objective paintings marry Abstract-Expressionist vigorous paint handling and intensely hued nearly monochromatic colors to lure the viewer into deep

contemplation and reflection.

The rich and robust colors wash over the viewer like tides washing upon the shore. They are breath made manifest.

Each vibrant and throbbing surface is paradoxically calm and seething, a virtual battle of wills. This is particularly evident in the Mantra series, where drawn geometric shapes reside side by side, uncomfortably close, like intrusive neighbors, while gorgeous colors and swirling brush strokes are just beneath the surface. This surface is still and contained while underneath it is an effervescent cacophony of life’s energy. One shifts awareness while trying to reconcile the two surfaces.

Marko allows us to join in her process of acknowledging thoughts, fears, anxieties as a way forward, a way to reflect on oneself and the world both inside and out. Her artistic intention merges with a spiritual one that honors one’s vulnerabilities creating these subtly psychological paintings that vibrate with intensity.

Nancy Kay Turner

Pasadena, CA.

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