Locks Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of watercolors by Elizabeth Osborne, including the artist’s sketchbooks, on view November 18th through December 31st, 2011. There will be a reception for the artist on Friday, December 2nd, from 5:30 to 7:30pm.
Osborne’s plein air watercolors were painted on location in Massachusetts, Maine, Arizona, and Italy. One has to imagine the artist on the porch of a house, high-up in Manchester-by-the-Sea, directly translating onto the paper the view all the way down to the sea. The immediacy of the watercolor technique enlightens the artist’s genuine approach to abstraction and realism. The rock formations of the Blue Water series, 1975, mimic abstract cutouts on a cerulean blue sea. At that time, upon return to her Philadelphia studio, the artist was painting large-scale acrylics, where she poured vibrant, saturated colors on the surface of the canvas - one of Osborne’s signatures. Whether the landscape lays at the background of a still life, or a window frames the view, looking out from the artist’s studio, there is often a ‘story into the story’ of Osborne’s compositions, like in Study of Manchester Window, 1982, and Hop House Studio, 2011.
The exhibition will also feature Osborne’s sketchbooks, which have never been seen. With an intimate scale, they offer a unique insight into the artist’s practice. WHYY recently produced an in-depth profile of the artist, which will be on view at the gallery for the duration of the exhibition.
Osborne has exhibited extensively throughout the United States. Her work is included in the collections of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, PA; Woodmere Art Museum, Philadelphia, PA; The State Museum of Pennsylvania, Harrisburg, PA; Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA; Delaware Art Museum, Wilmington, DE; and McNay Art Museum, San Antonio, TX. Osborne has received numerous awards including the Percy M. Owens Memorial Award, a MacDowell Colony Grant, the Richard and Hinda Rosenthal Foundation Award (American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters), and a Fulbright Fellowship, with which she traveled to Paris in 1963. She was trained at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia where she has been a faculty member from 1963.