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Lisa Gronseth
at Chambers @ 916, Portland, Oregon
Recommendation by Richard Speer

Lisa Gronseth looked out her hotel window in Dubai and found reflections and reflections of flections across its landscape of skyscrapers.


Continuing through July 28, 2012

At first glance, the architectural vistas in Lisa Gronseth’s "Dubai Series" look like watercolors:  studies in airy white and a host of blues from cerulean to midnight. But closer inspection reveals the works’ true media: acrylic-painted paper and Mylar, sometimes with the addition of graphite and pastel, collaged together in meticulous mosaics. Gronseth based the works on the views out her hotel window during a recent trip to the famously larger-than-life city in the United Arab Emirates, reflections and reflections of reflections dancing across skyscrapers, parking garages, and residential towers, cut by the sinuous contours of clouds overhead.  


One element conspicuously missing from these tableaux is people. The vertical landscape of Dubai is one of glass and steel, with human beings most often indoors to escape the punishing temperatures in favor of the lavish interiors for which the oil-fueled metropolis is renowned. Gronseth’s unpeopled cityscapes are slick, pristine, and eerie, the illusory subject matter dovetailing effectively with her virtuoso handling of collaged surface.

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