Zoe Cohen: Elegy for a Captain
OCTOBER 26 - NOVEMBER 8
OPENING RECEPTION: FRIDAY, OCTOBER 26, 5:00-7:00
Jen Tough Gallery is pleased to announce the first solo exhibition by gallery artist Zoe Cohen. Cohen has been part of numerous group shows at the gallery, including our inaugural show, “Wax”. Cohen’s work is reminiscent of a mid-century aesthetic, and is extremely popular with mid-century art and design collectors and fans, and she remains one of the gallery’s most sought after artists.
About Elegy for a Captain
The cornerstone for Zoe Cohen’s exhibit, Elegy for a Captain, is a series of found poems generated from, A Sea of Words: Lexicon and Companion to the Complete Seafaring Tales of Patrick O’Brian. Cohen’s abstract mixed media work explores the raw and strangely beautiful landscape of grief and loss.
Cohen investigates the theme of the threshold - a point of entry -through use of a personal color palette and an accumulation of layers in paper & paint on canvas. Embedded deep in the work or seen on the surface are words or fragments of poetry. Cohen views painting as visual poetry and historically has combined images & text in her work.
In researching this project she discovered historic precedents in the paintings of Robert Motherwell’s series, Elegy to the Spanish Republic, Cy Twombly’s, Poems to the Sea, and Anselm Kiefer’s work referencing the stark poetry of Paul Celan.
The elegy began as an ancient Greek metrical form and is traditionally written in response to the death of a person. The elements of a traditional elegy mirror three stages of loss. First, there is a lament, where the speaker expresses grief and sorrow, then praise and admiration of the idealized dead, and finally consolation and solace. Cohen’s canvases express the latitude of these passages of mourning.
Cohen lives and works in Eugene, Oregon.