Bringing Back Memories – Signe & Genna Grushovenko

 

The Usual Suspects, detail, oil on linen

Partners in both life and art, Signe & Genna have been collaborating for nearly ten years, and came to Leipers Creek Gallery in February of this year.  Not a day goes by in the gallery, that visitors are not drawn into their work, smiling and telling stories of their childhood! Genna begins their process by applying rich layers of pattern and tone to gessoed masonite or linen supports. Signe then selects an inspiration image from their extensive collection of vintage found photos, draws with oil pastel atop the abstract under layer using the photo for reference, and completes the image with blocky ‘panes’ of oil color. The final results of their collaboration are multi-layered paintings with deep surfaces, crisp at first glance but rewarding the careful viewer with an undercurrent of complex tonality and color play.  Follow them on their blog or FaceBook – but definitely come see them in the gallery!

 

Read this recent blog post by the Grushovenko’s describing the deep sense of nostalgia and joy that they put into their work – and that is definitely portrayed!

“We recently received an email from a client who was interested in our painting “The Way Back”. The entire message was lovely and thought provoking but one particular line stood out to me. It said “The saudade of your work is palpable and intoxicating.” This stood out mostly because not only did I have no idea what it meant but I had never even seen that word before. Google defines it as: ‘a Portuguese and Galician word that has no direct translation in English. It describes a deep emotional state of nostalgic or profound melancholic longing for an absent something or someone that one loves. Saudade was once described as “the love that remains” after someone is gone. Saudade is the recollection of feelings, experiences, places or events that once brought excitement, pleasure, well-being, which now triggers the senses and makes one live again.’ Wow. While this is a shade darker than we generally intend, it is a mood that we’ve always reached for. The definition goes on to describe a feeling that is ‘happy and sad at once’, missing that which is gone but joyous that it was experienced at all. Bless you, emailer, for adding to my vocabulary and giving me a deeper sense of what our work means.”

 

Bravo, Signe & Genna!  More to come!

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