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Gail Rothschild

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As artist and rock climber, my work is a muscular, tactile exploration of the physical world. Dynamic movement in space. Ropes and knots become lifelines that interconnect, weaving multiple levels of meaning. My series of Fabrication paintings begin with the basic program of an interlocking unit that implies an infinite pattern. It may be denatured by the intervention of a stress either tensile or compressive. I have no preconception of a composition; the field cannot help but grow organically. What grows also decays; what is interlocked will also unravel. The final painting expresses these realities of nature and culture. The world is and is (k)not. Tied through history, textile as common craft and painting as high art reflect the problematic privileging of human creation. By painting the de-fabrication of textiles, the work challenges notions of artistic expression and the hierarchies that are woven into our collective consciousness. Hanging off a cliff by one?s fingertips is less scary than striking out across a vast canvas. Yet it is in the risk-taking, the tackling of challenges that I discover new routes and master new techniques. Transitioning from public sculptor to studio painter has led me in profound directions as my bodies of work converge and my body as work enters the picture. My series of Climberscapes deconstruct a video self-portrait and then re-animate it as a painting where the multiple figures describe a landscape like a Chinese scroll.

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