Canada is excited to announce New Paintings, a one-person exhibition by Lily Ludlow. The paintings feature moody palettes, concise linework and biomorphic shapes that have become the defining features of the artist’s work. The figures that fill the canvases, often faceless women clad in blocky costumes, seem to be engaged in some sort of totemic performance, ceremonial display, or perhaps a modernist picnic on the grass.
The paintings are a mixture of figuration and machine-like curvilinear shapes that either fit together comfortably or jostle against each other and the confines of the painting’s boundaries. The arabesques and tender grace notes allude to dance; the isolation of a moment in time or a focus on specific gesture signify Ludlow’s deeply felt reality. Heavily worked, each piece becomes a tool for insight and understanding as the painter refines the position of a leg or stylized torso, gradually moving towards a sense of activated stasis. Despite the locked-in quality, the paintings also feature lightness: stray probing lines reveal the artist's hand and the glow of a soft yellow or hazy purple smolders with internal energy.
Ludlow is never satisfied with the easiest route to finish a painting; instead each piece is found through the process of painting, full of erasure and changes of direction and inspiration. Her idiosyncratic method produces both depictions and a physical embodiment of a romantic ideal, and we are left with the lyrical power of her muses.
Lily Ludlow (b. 1970, Los Angeles, CA) has shown at venues such as Hauser & Wirth, Nicelle Beauchene, and White Columns, all in New York; and has presented solo exhibitions with Shane Campbell Gallery, Chicago; Rebecca Camhi, Athens, Greece; and Canada, New York. Her first solo exhibition at Canada was in 2004. She lives and works in Port Chester, New York.