Semi-abstract, mixed media works on display at Amelia Douglas Gallery
By Cheryl Minns, Contributor
Nature is alive and radiant in Madelyn Hamilton’s Rhythms and Energy of Nature, the latest exhibit in the Amelia Douglas Gallery. The semi-abstract, mixed media landscapes feature multi-layered textures and vibrant depictions of movement. They can make viewers feel like they just walked into the woods by invoking a sense of touch and of sound
“I am profoundly affected by the visual folds, shapes, and highly textured or abrasive marks of my vast natural surroundings,” Hamilton wrote in her artist statement for the show. “The tactile matrixes of my art are there for investigation and provocation of thought, and hopefully offer the viewer a renewed awareness of our surrounding world.”
The paintings feature a variety of textures created by multiple layers of paint, which works particularly well in the paintings involving leaves. The bumpy and cracked lines add to the realness of the leaves, some of which look like they just fell off a tree in autumn.
The movement of wind through trees is captured in several of the paintings, including Upward Spiral, Red Wind, and Vibrancy in Motion. The latter painting captures the intense energy in the air with the leaves of a full, bright-green tree blowing in a white gust of wind.
The movement of water is seen throughout Hamilton’s stream paintings, which show leaves travelling along the water’s surface. Like the wind in her other paintings, several white lines blend into the blue water to depict the water’s motion. One of the stream paintings, Carried by the Flow, is a long and skinny piece with about a dozen leaves floating along the water. Since the painting is hung vertically, it almost looks like the leaves are going down a waterfall.
Hamilton attended the show’s opening reception on April 21 and spoke with guests about her artwork. She spoke to the Other Press about the process she went through in creating Frothy, Frolicking Flow. The painting captures leaves flowing along a frothy stream that was inspired by a creek near Hamilton’s home in West Kelowna.
“I painted this, thought it was finished, and then I started it again. I’ve probably been working on this for over a year,” she explained. “I’ll think it’s really done, but then it’s in my house or in my studio and I’m always looking at it. Then I figure out what’s wrong and go back into it. Discovery is always happening. It never stops. It’s ongoing.”
Hamilton’s paintings in the show are available for purchase. The prices range from $325 for smaller paintings to $2,300 for larger paintings.
To learn more about Hamilton’s works, check out her website at MadelynHamilton.com
Rhythms and Energy of Nature is on display in the Amelia Douglas Gallery on the fourth floor of the Douglas College New Westminster campus until June 11.
The next Amelia Douglas Gallery show, This Part Remains with Me by Louise A. DeGagne and Gregg Steffensen, will open on August 4. The show will be part of the New West Cultural Crawl on August 13 and 14.