Abstraction, Feminism, and Art History: Art by Ashleigh Bartlett

An abstract painting with sculptural elementsOn the Garden (Roses), acrylic on canvas, acrylic on bamboo, buckets

Ashleigh Bartlett works at the intersection of abstraction, feminism, and art history, with a particular interest in painting. The artist’s works are fundamentally based in painting, but often combine the techniques and sensibilities of paintings with other novel materials and ways of working to produce inspired contemporary works. 


Two abstract paintings displayed on bucketsPineapple, Anchors, Women (diptych), acrylic on canvas, buckets

 

Ashleigh’s recent series The Myth & The Dream encompasses abstract paintings with unique sculptural elements that affect the way the work is displayed. The paintings, created on canvas, are mounted atop twin buckets. The buckets themselves are painted with patterns that emulate those appearing on the painted surface itself, leading the viewer to question whether these are merely supports, or whether they are part of the painting as a whole. 

 

I find there’s a very Interesting balance of abstraction and negative space at work in these pieces. The surface of the canvas features abstract figures sitting on a field of neutral-hued negative space, giving the whole piece an architectural or almost linguistic sense, and allowing the viewer to speculate on deeper symbolic meanings.


An artwork consisting of a series of cut fabric piecesSummer Friends Gang, acrylic on canvas paper

Written by: Dallas Jeffs

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