In the Gallery: Between You and Me

Middlesex School
Cornelius Ayer Wood Gallery
September – November 2015
Between You and Me
Brad Nelson and Lucy Beecher Nelson

 

In this exhibition, husband and wife painters question the nature of relationships. For Beecher Nelson, the theme is immediately apparent; her diptychs use 15th century Italian marriage portraits as a departure point for contemporary couples to explore the nature of their own marriage. Each person chooses the clothing and accouterment of their spouse and their gazes pass across the borders of the panels as they make eye contact. The paintings are more portraits of the relationship itself rather than of two individuals.

The concept of “in between” functions on many levels: the space between Brad and Lucy, between their work, between subjects of the paintings, and between Brad and their daughters. For Brad, the concept of relationship is latent in the nature of being a father and receiving individual rocks from his daughters as gifts. He painstakingly paints each rock’s portrait starting with an underpainting of acrylic paint and baptismal water, therefore imbuing the paintings with a sense of metaphysical and emotional import. A reverence for this relationship is revealed in the process of completing the paintings, which also connect with the vows present in the work of Beecher Nelson.

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