Dana Oldfather is a Cleveland based painter who has exhibited in galleries and museums including Library Street Collective, Detroit, Zg Gallery, Chicago, Kathryn Markel Fine Art, New York, moCa Cleveland, and The University of Southern Queensland, in Australia. She was awarded the William and Dorothy Yeck Award for Young Painters, two Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Awards, a Satellite Fund Emergency Relief Grant from SPACES Gallery, The Warhol Foundation, and The Cleveland Foundation, and was a finalist for the Hopper Prize. Oldfather has been published in magazines and journals including Dovetail, Beautiful/Decay, and ArtMaze Magazine. Her paintings can be found in many public and corporate collections in the US including Eaton Corporation, MGM International, Bedrock Detroit, The Cleveland Clinic, and the Progressive Art Collection.
April 22 – May 28, 2023
Opening reception April 22, 6-8
"The word landscape originally came from the Dutch and had to do with making pictures….. From the earliest time, it has been loaded with wishful thinking.” Simon Schama, Landscape and Memory
Abattoir presents Violet Hour, a solo show by Cleveland-based painter Dana Oldfather. This is her first solo show with the gallery. In recent years, Oldfather has altered her painting practice from abstraction to a concentration on landscape, blending close observation with an inventive color palette resulting in images laden with moody and emotional overtones.
Violet Hour fittingly opens on April 22nd, Earth Day. In Oldfather’s dreamscapes, familiar plant and tree forms bathed in mysteriously sourced light, leave an impression of a remembered forest rather than an exact rendering. Animated and numinous, these arcadian woods are alive with hidden forces. A warm oxide red underpainting enlivens cool lavenders, greens and greys. Yellow beams spotlight areas of finely drawn detail, stubbled fields vibrating with a Van Gogh or Burchfield like energy. A landscape painting at this point in history is always a self-portrait – and Oldfather’s ever evolving introspective vision is her gift to us.
Dana Oldfather’s recent installations include moCa Cleveland, The University of Southern Queensland, Australia, Library Street Collective, Detroit, Zg Gallery, Chicago, and Kathryn Markel Fine Art, New York. She has received two Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Awards, a Satellite Fund Emergency Relief Grant from SPACES, and was a finalist for the Hopper Prize. Her paintings can be found in public and corporate collections including Eaton Corporation, MGM International, Bedrock, Detroit, The Cleveland Clinic, and the Progressive Art Collection.
I communicate the dilemma of being, through landscape. I bring my insides to bear on the outside and trepidation colors the scene. The atmosphere in the images is like that of an evening, eclipse, or summer storm. In the waning light, a glow indicates something or someone approaching. I describe the moment just before a reckoning or upheaval; the moment before fate takes hold and changes everything.