|Conley Harris | Hidden Delights
5th November - 29th November 2008
Conley Harris’ painting history is that of working in the realm of landscape. And like so many landscape painters, the need to experience and see a wide variety of sites has led him to study not only his native New England landscape, but also the UK, Japan, France, Italy and India.
The latter, India, has become the central focus of his studio painting and travel.
Simultaneously, Harris has thoughtfully pursued the collecting of old Indian drawings (Rajput, Pahari and Mughal) originally used as preparatory studies for miniature paintings.
As an artist drawing has played a major role in Harris’s life. A dynamic use of drawn line weaves in and out of the painting surface referencing landscape and figural details inspired by 17th and 18th C. Indian and Persian miniatures and manuscript sheets.
Into this complex gathering of images a fantastical and colorful landscape emerges. Figures appear within sheltered coves of rocky landscape or secluded in mountain forests under overhanging foliage. A playful energy gathers in the shadows. There is a sense of waiting and watching as an unsettled, culturally divided outside world signals chaos. Passages of otherworldly sky light dramatically pierce the dense landscapes below.
From a Review in The Boston Globe from a recent solo exhibition in Boston MA, art critic Cate McQuaid had these comments:
“Conley Harris is a historian and a painter’s painter. His lush paintings pay tribute to the history of Indian paintings while using it to explore questions of composition, figure/ground relationship and other painterly issues.
Harris draws large a detail from a paisley pattern beside a wandering poet, over a flowering shrub. That detail, floating on the painting’s surface, fiery and transparent, could be the poet’s muse”
Harris has exhibited across the United States in New York City, Boston, Houston, Chicago, St. Louis and San Francisco as well as in Tokyo and Kyoto Japan and Strasbourg France.
Harris’ paintings and drawings have been collected in the United States by museums such as the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; The Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University Museums, Cambridge MA; and collections in many financial institutions such as CITIBANK headquarters, New York City; the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago and Boston; Fidelity Investments Boston and worldwide and by many private collectors.
November 2008, Indar Pasricha Contemporary will present new oil paintings and mixed- media drawings by Conley Harris.