Sale 18459
First Open: Post-War and Contemporary Art Online
Online 7 - 18 February 2020

London, Saatchi Gallery, Abstract America, 2008, pp. 114-115 (illustrated in colour, p. 115).

Elizabeth Neel’s abstract paintings reference figuration and a broad set of cultural associations. Her use of language is both specific and poetic, and her titles often hint to literal content or expand on narrative suggestions made within the paintings. Rips Tree Stripped Rain links to Washington Irving’s 1819 "Rip Van Winkle", the protagonist of which falls asleep under a tree and wakes years after to discover many changes have occurred. The work, as is often the case within her oeuvre, traces excavations of life and explores the ineluctable passage of time, by re-imagining the natural setting of the tale. Neel combines delicate and intimate colours with decisive gestural brush strokes. Her compelling pictorial practice results here in a fresh and harmonious composition strengthened by different tactile perceptions. The material roughness of the browns, the bright smoothness of the greens and airy softness of the pinks and whites characterise this dreamlike yet meditative vision.

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