My paintings bring together elements of both landscape and geometric abstraction. I create an evocative experience of landscape space, light, and atmosphere within a grid-like structure. I am drawn to moments in nature when form and space seem to mingle, when edges disappear and atmosphere becomes all-encompassing — fog playing between tree branches, light shining through clouds, the veil of a snowstorm, or the fading colors at dusk. In my work, hints of landscape emerge and then dissolve into layers of subtly shifting color and mark. The small, discrete brushstrokes accumulate into dense, shimmering spaces, echoing the fundamental particles that compose all matter. They hover and vibrate between the crisp lines of an anchoring grid, an interplay that suggests the universal duality between structure and randomness, order and chaos, the known and the unknown.
I think of my paintings as places the viewer can enter into with both the mind and the body. They have a breathing quality, a quiet vibration created by the push and pull of mark and color. Each painting is built up slowly, with many layers, and that time embedded in the work invites viewers to slow down in front of it too, the way one might stop and breathe deeper upon being in nature.
Rachael Wren received a BA from the University of Pennsylvania and an MFA from the University of Washington. She has had solo shows at Wave Hill, The String Room Gallery at Wells College, The Painting Center, Schema Projects, the University of Massachusetts Lowell, and Providence College. Her work has been included in group exhibitions at the Weatherspoon Art Museum, the National Academy Museum, Garis & Hahn, Jeff Bailey Gallery, Rooster Gallery, Geoffrey Young Gallery, and Trestle Gallery, among many others. Rachael is the recipient of the Julius Hallgarten Prize from the National Academy Museum and an Aljira Fellowship. She has been awarded residencies at Emerson Landing, Chashama North, the Saltonstall Foundation, the Byrdcliffe Art Colony, the Vermont Studio Center, the Anderson Center, and the Artist House at St. Mary’s College of Maryland. She lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.