Eleanor Ray: Paintings

November 18 - December 24, 2015

Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents an exhibition of paintings by Eleanor Ray. This exhibition consists of works from the last two years, with imagery from France, Italy, Scotland, Iceland and the United States. This is Ray’s third solo exhibition at Steven Harvey.

Eleanor Ray (b.1987) is known for very small paintings that play with the conventions of observational painting and street photography. Her sensitive and sparse representations are both expansive and intimate. In her catalog essay for the show, critic Nora Griffin writes: “Her oil-on- panel works are delicately mimetic representations of places that she has observed, inhabited, and loved. The fact that they are small (the largest measures 8”x10”) is integral to her approach to painting…. The scale recalls 14th century Sienese panel painting in which the physical world becomes a jewel box for the viewer to behold.”

In her new body of work, Ray takes the painted capture abroad. Traveling to Scotland and France on a series of residencies, she paints images of Matisse’s chapel and Fra Angelico’s Annunciation, continuing a series of art-related sites that began with images of the Basilica of San Francesco in Assissi and Donald Judd’s residence in New York. In her recent work, Ray continues to employ windows and doorways as inner framing devices that converse with the rectangle of her panels. As always, her paintings are taut with decisive color and structural rectilinearity. This new work is impressively concise – resources are consolidated and only that which is essential to the representation remains.

Eleanor Ray received her undergraduate degree from Amherst and a MFA from the New York Studio School. Jerry Saltz included Ray’s first exhibition at SHFAP in his list of the Ten Best Art Shows of 2013. In 2015, Ray was included in the annual Invitational Exhibition of Visual Arts at the American Academy of Arts and Letters. She received their museum purchase prize and her work was subsequently included in the Exhibition of Work by Newly Elected Members and Recipients of Honors and Awards. Ray received a New York Foundation for the Arts fellowship for Painting this year. In 2015, Ray participated in two residencies abroad; the Dumfries House Residency in Ayrshire, Scotland as well as The Bau Institute at the Camargo Foundation in Cassis, France.