Joanne Julian’s newest exhibition Defying Darkness at the Carnegie Art Museum in Oxnard, California traces in over 30 graphite and sumi ink drawings the development in her recent work of a rising fascination for the impacts and subtly iridescent atmosphere of darkness. The artist’s growing understanding and facility with contrasting peacefully white voids with energizing splashes of black has deepened, until now the beauty of darkness has itself become the setting.
Budding evidences of this dark visual challenge in hindsight appears throughout her various series and is displayed in a few, early hinting samples from Julian’s Zen Circles and Botanicals Series. The fascination and investigation, however, hits full stride in recent works in her Fish, Clouds and Skies, and particularly Birds and Feather Series. In these latter, the use of darkness and cropping lends a floating, unanchored, almost celestial quality to the creatures depicted. Yet all are represented with the elegant sparseness that Julian has become noted for over her 30 year career. Coupled with the large –scale of the drawings, Defying Darkness wraps viewers in a quietly dramatic experience.
Joanne Julian was born in Los Angeles. She received her BA and MA degrees in sculpture and printmaking from California State University, Northridge and her MFA degree in painting from Otis Art Institute of Parsons School of Design. For 34 years she was a full-time faculty member at College of the Canyons in Valencia, California, during which time she was also a half-time faculty member at California State University Northridge. Having studied and traveled in Asia, the influence of Zen Buddhist aesthetics has been noted as an undercurrent in Julian’s art.
The artist has had over 20 solo exhibitions and been featured in 60 group exhibitions nationally. Among these have been exhibitions at: Jan Baum Gallery in Los Angeles, Thomas Babeor Gallery in La Jolla, Laguna Beach Museum of Art, Newport Harbor Art Museum, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and in 2015 California State University Northridge. Public collections of her work include: Atlantic Richfield, Bank of America, Grand Wailea Resort, Home Savings of America, The Irvine Company, Nestle, Nikko, Price Waterhouse, and Teneco Oil.
Joanne Julian will give an Artist’s Gallery Talk at Carnegie Art Museum in Oxnard on March 30th at 6:30pm. An exhibition catalog with essay by Meher McArthur is available. For additional information, see carnegieam.org and joannejulian.com.
Location: Carnegie Art Museum/424 South C Street/ Oxnard 805.385.8157 carnegieam.org
Hours: Thurs- Sat 10am-5pm & Sun 1-5pm. Closed holidays and during exhibit installation.