Winston Wachter Fine Art, New York is excited to announce Dual Nature, an online exhibition of monochromatic mica paintings by Catherine Howe. In this body of work, Howe translates her inspirations of flora and fauna into works that consist of dynamic layers of texture and light.
Catherine Howe works in a studio located in the Hudson Valley. There she is surrounded by a thriving garden that acts as the catalyst to much of her artistic inspiration. While watching the garden evolve, she explores themes of destruction and renewal within the changing nature of the current climate of the world.
The backgrounds of the paintings are illuminated with iridescent mica powder suspended in acrylic medium to create paint films that change hue depending on the environment. Layered on top of the smooth mica surface, are opaque cloud-white reliefs of floral imagery that float above the surface.
The process of creation is very physical and intuitive for Howe. She draws inspiration from butterflies’ wings, feathers of bluebirds, and petals of anemone for their iridescent qualities. Her technique consists of large gestures of movement resulting in splatters, spills and scraping away layers of paint that reveal exuberant floral abstractions.
“My garden is both a metaphoric and actual space for the artwork to be realized. It’s a complex setting: culture only exists as ideas but nature is always there, and a garden contains a duality of both.” –Catherine Howe
Catherine Howe’s paintings are exercises in the evocative power of paint as a material. The painted surfaces vary widely in paint application, with some areas thinly glazed or quickly sketched, and others so thick they appear to be in relief. Howe’s palette is known to be strong and vibrant, though not without eerie contrasts. She was a Professor on the Graduate Painting Faculty at the New York Academy of Art and Chair of the Department of Critical Studies until 2021. She has exhibited extensively in the United States, including solo exhibitions at Lesley Heller Workspace, Casey Kaplan Gallery, VonLintel Gallery, the William Shearburn Gallery, and more. Her work has also been included in international exhibitions in Paris, London, Munich, and Amsterdam.