Successful Seattle Debut!

Thank you to all who came to my Seattle debut exhibition! Re•Place brought together some past mixed media work, paper collage, and brand-new digital collages. I was thrilled to introduce myself and my work, and to show at Majestic ARTS Presents, a beautiful gallery in the Greenwood neighborhood of Seattle. (Next time you’re there, look up at the wonderful ceiling beams).

This was a wonderful opportunity to reunite with some old friends, and make some new ones. I’m also proud to say that seven works were purchased. I’m happy to send them all off to good homes–most in the Seattle area, and two to South Korea.

Stay tuned; I hope this is the first of many Seattle exhibitions. And thank you all for your support!

Re•Place Art Exhibition: Artist Statement

My Seattle debut art exhibition at Majestic ARTS Presents allows me to introduce myself and my work to the Pacific Northwest. Mixed media paintings inspired by Italy and other locations will be on view, as well as paper and digital collages which have never been exhibited before.

The title of the exhibition is Re•Place. This theme refers to my ongoing interest in travel, maps, and location, to my recent move to the Seattle area, and to the act of arranging collage elements out of their original context.

Here’s my official artist statement for the exhibition:

Like many travelers and sentimentalists, I collect souvenirs to actively record experiences of a specific time and place. These collected items are as varied as volcanic rock from the top of Mt. Etna, the stereograph that was an anniversary gift and sat on my dresser in New York, and the photo I took of Seattle’s skyline just after moving here.

Including such items in my work allows me to go beyond mere associations of memory. By recombining or repositioning them as visual elements, I’m able to reinterpret the place or experience. This creates new geographic and emotional places, even to the point of fashioning a new world.

Considering my place in the world has become increasingly important in recent months because, for my wife and me, changing our location has a real effect on our marital status. Crossing state lines can, in an instant, erase our marriage. Yet, that jarring thought is balanced by increasing acceptance in other locations.

These feelings of geographic and emotional displacement are a current underpinning of my work, along with the simultaneous joy of pioneering through unfamiliar territory.

Sneak Peek at Re•Place: Collages by Maura McGurk at Majestic ARTS Presents

Many of you know that I’ve been busy getting ready for my Seattle debut exhibition at Majestic ARTS Presents. The opening is in two weeks!

I’ve been hard at work on a new body of work consisting of digital collages. I’ve often worked with collage, mixed media, and even digital images within the context of a painting, but in my heart, I’m a painter. This is the first time I’ve incorporated the computer exclusively, and left the paint on the palette.

I was very pleasantly surprised to find that the digital collages have been very freeing for me.

They allow for easy change of color and especially compositional placement. Don’t like how that looks? Just delete it in one click!

They’ve let me talk about moving to a new place (Seattle from New York City) and how wonderful and fun that’s been. On the flip side, I can work out feelings of displacement, of being in a new place where I don’t know my way around.

They let me create totally imaginary environments, or put together items that don’t usually occupy the same space. While this contributes to a pretty-lighthearted feel in many of the collages, it also lends a little bit of healthy tension, as in, Let me look a little more closely at that–what’s going on here?

Here’s a sneak peek at some of the new work I’ll be showing. Hope to see you there!