Jen Tough Gallery

Rebecca Crowell: Inner Nature

Jen Tough Hemsley
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Join us for an incredible solo exhibition of internationally recognized painter Rebecca Crowell May 11-24 with an opening reception on Saturday, May 12, 5:00-7:00.

Known for her richly ethereal paintings that recall the natural world through an earthen surface and palette, Crowell's work begs for closer, more intimate examination. Depicting both distant landscapes and a studious recollection of natural surfaces, the work creates a sense of calm and transcendence. In this body of work, many of the paintings reflect her emotional response to travel and sense of place.

Having been in several group shows and art fairs with Jen Tough Gallery, this is her first solo exhibition with the gallery. She currently lives in and works in Wisconsin and New Mexico, is represented by numerous galleries in Europe and the United States, and is the author of the book Cold Wax Medium: Techniques, Concepts and Conversations with Jerry McLaughlin. Crowell is widely sought after for her teaching expertise, and her work is in both private and corporate collections worldwide.


"Certain kinds of landscapes feel like home to my soul. These are places that are rugged, wild, and vast, yet they move me to an inner quiet and sense of peace. In them I feel a deep connection both to the place and to my truest self. When I’m in these places I spend time alone walking, exploring, photographing, and looking. I experience moments that evoke the essence of the place where I am, and these lead to strong sensory and emotional memories. In the studio, these memories influence my choices of color, texture, line and shape. My images are also the result of response to materials and process, free association and following intuitive impulses.

Wild locations that have had an impact on my work include western Ireland, where I am a Fellow at Ballinglen Arts Foundation, and northern New Mexico where my husband and I have a winter home. I’ve also spent significant time in northern Sweden, the Catalonia region of Spain, northern Italy and the North Island of New Zealand. Painting satisfies a basic need for me-- a channel to my inner self, a reflection of these meaningful experiences, and a path to new discoveries. I’ve been painting professionally for over 30 years, and remain challenged and energized by my process. I work with a balance of spontaneity and careful editing, moving back and forth from intuitive flow to thoughtful analysis. My aim is to achieve structural integrity and strength through the accumulation of quiet passages and nuanced surfaces. I build up multiple layers of paint mixed with cold wax medium. Sometimes the layers are thick and textural, other times they are thin veils of color. The layers are selectively scratched, eroded and dissolved, an approach that reflects natural processes of the rugged places I love". — Rebecca Crowell