July 26, 2017

Watermelon and Mars Black

For this work I employed a 11/2 inch palette knife to achieve greater dimension and wider strokes. I am embarking on a series of paintings that will closely examine black as a color and study it within the context of (subtractive) color theory. Black often provokes a negative response or association. It's a mysterious color that is connected to the fear of the unknown, death, evil, etc. On the flip side it can evoke power, formality, and elegance. Here's to exploring what else black can do . . .



Watermelon and Mars Black, 2017, heavy body acrylics mixed with ceramic stucco and iridescent medium on canvas, 16 x 20 inches.

































July 12, 2017

"The Pale Blue Dot"

Whenever I need a little perspective on life I look at the night sky. During the day, the universe's facade becomes shrouded by the sun and a pale blue sky. At night, one can truly see and feel how small and insignificant we are in the cosmos. Too many people seem to have forgotten that universe was not created for us nor are we at its center. Many believe they're kin to the sun and that all matter in the universe is meant to revolve around them. We've lost all perspective.

Lately I have been trying to soak up as much science (specifically astrophysics) as I can. When I came across Carl Sagan's Pale Blue Dot photograph and quote, my scale and position in the cosmos hit me like a ton of bricks. On February 14, 1990, Carl Sagan convinced NASA to turn the camera on Voyager 1 around one last time, for one last look at home. This famous photograph captured our planet from approximately 3.7 billion miles away suspended in a ray of sunlight.

"Look again at that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there-on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam. 
The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. 
Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. 
The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand. 
It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known.” 
― Carl Sagan, Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space, 1994
While I was painting The Pale Blue Dot I was thinking about my own frailty, the vulnerability of Earth, and the weaknesses of the human race. I also questioned how anyone could fail to understand that we are not titans in the cosmic arena, but rather miniscule specks of life floating among the stars, the real giants. We are inhabiting a planet that created us, not the other way around. Gone is the respect we should have for one another, our planet, and ourselves. We're heading down a dark road that lacks higher intelligence and enlightenment. A dark road composted of only the purest of black and the purest of white. What happened to all the shades of gray? There are so few things in life that don't require at the very least of touch of gray.

Presently, we are so blinded by identity politics, technology, rhetoric (from all sides of the aisle), hatred, and fear that we are forgetting the most important fact: WE are all in this together. Truly understanding that concept has the potential to save us from self-destruction and from destroying our home, the only home we have ever known: The Pale Blue Dot.

We know what divides us. What will unite us?



Alison Palizzolo, The Pale Blue Dot, 2017, Liquitex spray paint, liquid acrylics, heavy body acrylics, and iridescent medium, 36 x 36 inches.












The Pale Blue Dot (far left) is now on view at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, NH, through the end of September 2017. The opening reception is Thursday, July 20, 5:00-6:30 p.m., at DHMC. Please check Facebook for more information about the event!

June 27, 2017

Red

Red has been chosen as finalist and will be included in AVA Gallery and Art Center's "2017 Juried Summer Exhibition."
The opening reception will be held at AVA Gallery, located at 11 Bank Street, Lebanon, NH, on Friday, July 14, from 5:00-7:00 p.m. The exhibition opens on July 14, and will remain on view through August 23, 2017.



Red, from the Single Breakthrough series, 2016, heavy body acrylics mixed with ceramic stucco and iridescent medium, 18" x 24".























June 23, 2017

Gilded

Another work for my upcoming installation at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, NH. I am installing in the second week of July and the opening reception will be at the hospital on July 20, 2017, 5:00-6:30 p.m.



Alison Palizzolo, Gilded, 2017, gold leaf underpainting, heavy body acrylics mixed with ceramic stucco, heavy gloss gel medium, and iridescent medium, 30 x 40 inches.

































June 21, 2017

"Color Speaks" Recap

My first solo exhibition Color Speaks: Works by Alison Palizzolo was on view at The Derryfield School in Manchester, NH, January 30-March 17, 2017. While the exhibition was on view, I visited the school for a day and worked with various studio art and art history classes. It was an amazing and priceless experience. I sincerely hope that some day I will have the opportunity to teach again. The students were wonderful and their observations were pretty incredible.




If you weren't able to see the installation for yourself then I hope you will enjoy these installation photographs! Artist and art teacher at The Derryfield School, Becky Longley Barsi installed all the works beautifully and took these photographs:
















The day I visited The Derryfield School each student experimented with my techniques and created their own mini palette knife paintings. Afterward they were added to the installation.







More About the Works from Color Speaks


Single Breakthrough Series:

The Single Breakthrough series is an exploration in color theory, perception, and communication. I am employing the same compositional formula, size ratio of 3:4, and artistic style for each painting. These constants are meant to facilitate the viewer to focus on color as the subject and medium. I believe the use of these unifying characteristics will enable a true artistic exploration of color. Allowing the viewer to fully consider their innate emotional and intellectual responses to various hues.

The viewer should first explore the series as a whole and then contemplate them as individual works of art. When displayed in a group, the paintings are meant to speak to one another. Individuals will naturally be drawn to color schemes that ignite a conscious or subconscious reaction. It is necessary to examine which hues generate positive responses and why. Alternatively, the viewer to also consider why their perception of certain colors motivate a negative reaction.

Microcosm Series:

Each larger 18x24 inch painting (3:4) is accompanied by a 3x3 inch (1:1) mini painting, created from the same palette as it's larger counterpart. The microcosms test how our visual perception of identical colors can be altered by a change in scale. The microcosms are also meant to provide another possible point of entry into my work. Hopefully, they too will spark conversations centered on color perception and communication.

June 15, 2017

"Just Before Sunset"

Finally back in the studio. I created this for my upcoming exhibit at Dartmouth-Hitchock Medical Center, Lebanon, NH, on view early July through late September.
The opening reception will be at the hospital on July 20, 2017.


Alison Palizzolo, Just Before Sunset, 2017, Liquitex acrylic spray paint, liquid acrylics, heavy body acrylics, and iridescent medium on canvas, 30 x 30 inches.
























January 19, 2017

"Color Speaks: Works by Alison Palizzolo"

January 30 through March 17, 2017

Reception for the Artist: Friday, February 10, 6:00-7:00 p.m.


The Derryfield School Lyceum Gallery proudly presents Color Speaks, stunningly bright and colorful paintings by New Hampshire artist Alison Palizzolo. “Color is to visual vocabulary as words are to auditory speech” says the artist and her work reflects that sense. Color Speaks will talk to its viewers with work that is playful and experimental. Alison says “My artistic decisions are rooted in color theory, drawing upon color’s rich history and from the doctrines of scholars such as Aristotle, Newton, Goethe, Munsell, Albers, and others.”

Ms. Palizzolo grew up locally in an artistic household, and began taking art lessons at the Currier Museum of Art at the age of seven. She graduated cum laude from Keene State College in 2009 with an individualized major in art history and a minor studio art. During the summer of her sophomore year, she obtained an internship at the Hood Museum of Art at Dartmouth College, which led to a full-time position. In May 2016 she was promoted to public relations coordinator. Ms. Palizzolo says for her, “Creating art has always been my greatest passion, studying the history of art is a close second.”

The works Ms. Palizzolo will share with the Derryfield community are comprised of a series entitled Single Breakthrough, which is to be viewed as a whole and then as a microcosm. The artist uses a consistence of ratio and compositional formula, and style in her creations in order to “facilitate the viewer to focus on color as the subject and medium. I believe the use of these unifying characteristics will enable a true artistic exploration of color. Allowing the viewer to fully consider their innate emotional and intellectual responses to various hues.”

The observer is encouraged to first “explore the series as a whole and then contemplate them as individual works of art. When displayed in a group, the paintings are meant to speak to one another. Individuals will naturally be drawn to color schemes that ignite a conscious or subconscious reaction. It is necessary to examine which hues generate positive responses and why. Alternatively, the viewer to also consider why their perception of certain colors motivate a negative reaction.” Each larger 18x24 inch painting (3:4) is accompanied by a 3x3 inch (1:1) mini painting, created from the same palette as it's larger counterpart. The microcosms test how our visual perception of identical colors can be altered by a change in scale. The microcosms are also meant to provide another possible point of entry into my work. Hopefully, they too will spark conversations centered on color perception and communication.”

In her work, Ms. Palizzolo is searching for, what color theorist Josef Albers described as, the “magic of color.” Albers writes "In order to use color effectively it is necessary to recognize that color deceives continually.” Palizzolo’s paintings are “experiments in color communication, how our eyes interpret the language of color to our brain, and the resulting emotional reaction or intellectual response.” Experience for yourself the magic of color and how it speaks!

Color Speaks runs from January 30 to March 17, 2017. All are invited to a reception for the artist Friday, February 10, from 6:00-7:00 p.m. (snow date March 15, 6:00-7:00 p.m.) in The Derryfield School's Lyceum Gallery. Live music by Derryfield student musicians, and refreshments will be provided. The Gallery is open weekdays, 8:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. To learn more visit The Derryfield School's website or email lyceumgallery@derryfield.org.


ARTIST STATEMENT:

Color is to vision as words are to speech. Our eyes are vehicles through which we interpret the optical language of color. In my work I am searching for what color theorist Josef Albers described as the “magic of color.”

Color is the real subject of my work. My paintings are meant to be playful and experimental. My artistic decisions are rooted in color theory, drawing upon color’s interpretation and usage throughout history and from the doctrines of scholars such as Aristotle, Newton, Goethe, Munsell, Albers, and others. I contemplate both the writings of color theorists as well as the historical development of the color wheel. My paintings are experiments in color communication: how our eyes interpret the language of color to our brain and the resulting emotional reaction or intellectual response. They investigate how colors speak to each other (and the viewer) on a two-dimensional surface as well as how texture, movement, composition, and scale effect the way color is perceived.

Examining color through the lens of abstract painting presents both challenges and advantages in terms of viewer accessibility. My stylistic choices are secondary to my use of color as the subject and medium, but are also important in laying the groundwork for each piece. Stylistically, I am exploiting the "comfortable familiarity" of post-impressionism, abstract expressionism, and geometric abstraction. I am stylistically referencing these popular movements in an attempt to capitalize on their renowned effectiveness and to guide the viewer to a convenient point of entry. Allowing the eye to easily transition from reading the image as a whole to absorbing its details.

My paintings are meant to draw the viewer in and invite close looking. The "organized chaos" of my work is meant to reflect the structure of modern day life. Fast-paced and technology driven, our social construct is always changing but never slowing. Art is a constant in human history and as society evolves, so, too does art. Through the use of an all over painting technique, I am aiming to give the viewer cause to stop, and really absorb what's in front of them and provide an escape. An escape not necessarily from reality, or from what is in front of us, but from the buzzing world around us.

As in many styles of artistic expression, a single work of art can evoke different emotional or intellectual responses from each viewer. The same can be said of color. I believe that color can only be truly explored through abstraction, because color itself is an abstract notion. My fascination with color lies within the likelihood that no two sets of eyes will ever perceive one color in exactly the same way.

"And even
if that round red Coca Cola sign with the same white name in the middle
is actually shown so that everyone focuses on the same red,
each will receive the same projection on his retina,
but no one can be sure whether each has the same perception."
—Josef Albers, Interaction of Color, (1963)