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"Waiting Crowds"

- Until 25.08.22

Contemporary painter Jaclyn Conley often refers to photographic archival material in her vivid, introspective paintings reflecting socio-political themes. Her upcoming solo show, entitled Waiting Crowds, reveals an ongoing evolution of this practice. Taking place from 4 – 25 August 2022 at MARUANI MERCIER in their Knokke location, the exhibition will present her latest body of work which departs on relational aesthetics, collective ideals, and crowd behavior.

“Photographs are open documents that can be filled with imagined characters and their stories. In them, I find persistent and familiar gestures which connect across time and place, art and lived history. In recent paintings, I am compiling figures into the bodies of crowds, masses of shared belief and faith swelling to the edges of the frame. As I’m painting these images I’m able to anchor moments of surety and optimism which are otherwise fleeting. Whether community gatherings, political marches, or spectacles here are people who saw visions, thought they had answers, and dreamed of better ways of being. Whether utopian, political, or spiritual, they are people doing something together under a shared idea. And though largely unfulfilled, rather than seeing these as failures these collective displays confirm a part of human nature that is buoyant. While the crowd represents anticipation and hope it is also a potentially dangerous entity. Crowds also articulate a sense of anxiety about our physical closeness to one another and to group behavior, a body of energy that is unpredictable. Through contrasts of painterly gestures and hard, fractured edges I hold on to this unstable duality,” writes Conley.

Jaclyn Conley (b. 1979) is a Canadian-born artist based in New Haven, CT. Conley has exhibited nationally and internationally at venues including The Painting Center, New York, NurtureArt, New York, Projective City, Paris, Wynick-Tuck Gallery, Toronto, and the Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Ridgefield, CT. Conley has been an artist in residence at NXTHVN, the Vermont Studio Center, and The Emily Carr University of Art and Design, Vancouver, Canada. She has received grants including a Connecticut Office of the Arts Fellowship, Canada Council for the Arts Visual Arts Project Grants, an Elizabeth Greenshields Award, and a Fellowship from the Sam and Adele Golden Foundation. Her works have been reviewed and featured in numerous publications including The New York Times, Canadian Art, Border Crossings, and New American Painting. She has been represented by MARUANI MERCIER since 2019.

Kustlaan 90
8300 Knokke-Heist



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Contemporary Art Belgium is a platform dedicated to provide a selection of current contemporary art exhibitions in Belgium. It was created to turn a spotlight on the large and very dynamic Belgian contemporary art scene as well as to connect people and start dialogues.

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