Outside In, a two-person exhibition at the James Oliver Gallery in Philadelphia, featured paintings by Philadelphia studio artists Ekaterina Popova and Phyllis Gorsen. Outside In ran from September 10th - October 15th, 2022.
Outside In was a focus on human interaction with nature, and the current experience of effort to reach for the wilderness outside our walls amidst recent isolation. The artists emphasize the untamed part of our world that sustains it and, in turn, sustains us; Popova’s and Gorsen’s paintings explore unguarded states that occur within the realm of these interactions in nature, and describe the intrinsic longing to return to that which nurtures us.
Ekaterina Popova was born in Russia, and immigrated to the United States when
she was 13 years old. A BFA recipient of Kutztown University (2011) and the founder
of Create! Magazine, Kat is interested in expressive work exploring mood and emotion
and is influenced by post-impressionism, fauvism, magical realism, which has enabled her to examine the subject of home, place, belonging, and identity. Her work has been exhibited nationally, including The Painting Center in New York, Hot Bed Gallery, Decorazon Gallery, Affordable Art Fair, Art Miami Fairs, The Trenton City Museum, Paradigm Gallery, Delaware Contemporary, The Boxheart Gallery, A.I.R. Gallery, and more.
Ekaterina Popova’s body of work is based on healing through a connection with nature. The subject matter comprises vulnerable figures seeking regeneration by being submerged in the natural landscape. These scenes of uninhibited behavior are drawn from memory and chronicles her experience of being out in nature. They are snapshots of those moments when people live in their most personal spaces. The paintings, both specific and universal in nature, allow the viewer to develop their own narrative for what is happening.
EKATERINA POPOVA, "The Rose"
8x8", Gouache on Panel
Phyllis Gorsen, born in Philadelphia, PA, is an artist and curator, who received her MFA from the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in 2014. Her work has been exhibited nationally, including galleries in New York, Philadelphia, and California. Her exhibitions include a solo show at Boston Street Gallery and a recent two person exhibition at Hot Bed Gallery in Philadelphia. Gorsen has been featured in many publications, and many of her paintings are in collections throughout the United States.
With fantasized scenes, Phyllis Gorsen’s work bridges a connection to wildlife, playfully incorporating animals and insects. Rooted in desire to become more connected to the natural world that is currently compromised in our climate crisis, the work creates a focus on the truth that the mere existence of these animals, insects and plant life fortify the planet, making it a stronger place. In expressing these concepts, Gorsen has developed a specific technique that achieves a multi-dimensional surface, involving a variety of materials. With paint, charcoal, painted paper and canvas, and hand-made papers collected from all over the world, the artist applies thousands of pieces of mixed mediums to each painting, generating a multitude of layers that creates vibrating surfaces imbued with uncertainty and surprise.
PHYLLIS GORSEN, "Yellow Butterfly"
5" Round, Mixed Media on Canvas