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Sundsten Work at Grover-Thurston Gallery

Sundsten Work at Grover-Thurston Gallery

: Francesca Sundsten, Skin, Oil on panel, 24 x 20 inches, 2013.

Sundsten Work at Grover-Thurston Gallery

: Francesca Sundsten, Deep, Oil on panel, 30 x 24 inches, 2013.

Sundsten Work at Grover-Thurston Gallery

: Francesca Sundsten, Animal, Oil on linen, 42 x 38 inches, 2013. Photo by Spike Mafford.

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Starting July 11, Creatures opens at the Grover/Thurston Gallery, a showing of the remarkable paintings of Francesca Sundsten.

When people talk about an artist’s imagination, they are talking about work like Cornish faculty member Francesca Sundsten’s. Recommended is a simple google of her name under “images”; this brings up a vivid, amazing, impressive and deep gallery of work. You’ll find chimeras and other unnatural wonders there worthy of an Ovid alongside paintings that suggest a carnival sideshow. Then there are the paintings that bring to mind images from Max Ernst’s collage novel of the 1930s, Une Semaine de Bonté, but refined, in luscious color and with virtuosic brushwork. Still others reference 17th- and 18th-century portraiture, but with a twist, to say the least. Such products of Sundsten’s rich imagination will be on display in a show at the Grover/Thurston Gallery starting July 17.

Creatures runs from July 11 to August 24. The Grover/Thurston Gallery is at 319 3rd Avenue South, Seattle, Washington 98104. There is an artist reception on ‘Second Thursday,’ July 11, 2013. From 6-8 pm at the gallery.

Francesca Sundsten is on the adjunct faculty of Cornish’s art department, teaching painting, life drawing and special topics. She received a bachelor of arts degree from the San Francisco Art Institute and an M.F.A. from Stanford. Her Wikipedia entry notes that she is a Seattle native and “She has also lived in England, Malaysia, Boston, and San Francisco.”

“In this new body of work Francesca Sundsten applies traditional techniques while exploring elements of composition, palette, and minor abstractions of space and paint,” according to the Grover/Thurston site. “Sundsten allows her process and the painting to dictate the characters in her works rather than forcing the subject to become something preconceived. The people and animals she depicts are not inspired by any specific person or creature but brought out by the course of the artistic process.”

“I’m working with ways of combining both the graphic and the atmospheric, realism and abstraction, the observed and the imagined, to form a cohesive whole,” says Sundsten. “This work is lighter in both palette and mood than previous, and I’m hoping that a looser animation of elements within the traditional portrait form will result in a dynamic series.”

Gallery hours at Grover/Thurston are from Tuesday - Saturday 11 am to 5 pm and by appointment.


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