'Between Deep Cuts (Glass Bottle Beach)' 2021 oil on canvas. 36 x 30 1.5 inches

‘Thinking about Forgetting’ by Amelia Carley @ Otra Vox Gallery

June 1, 2022

In her opening Thinking about Forgetting at Otra Vox Gallery, Amelia Carley explores, nay, transcends the manufacturing elements which impose an artifice upon the shoreline of a Brooklyn Beach called Glass Bottle Beach, towards arriving at a novel meditation of preservation. The concept being that her confrontation with waste products which organically arrive onto the shoreline become her source of inspiration to originally craft pseudo-psychedelic firmaments of the imagination.


It truly is spectacular to behold: that such ideas expressed are generated from the illumination of broken shards of glass; a man-made, temporary utility of the storage of liquids, becoming useless once broken. No, we do not have a commentary on this transience in her work; instead, we have a cosmic expansion formed as a necessary reaction to her menagerie of glass, pouring out new forms of irradiances for her to mentally capture and scintillate.

‘Viridescent Wanderings’ (2021) oil on canvas. Courtesy of the artist and Otra Vox Gallery.

Yet it is interesting that her works do not have such a potent acuteness to the glistening, of gloss, of what we normally perceive of as sunlight reflecting off glass, for instance. I would be hesitant to call it muted, for that would infer the artist is conscientious of the intensity of light reflecting off such a glassy surface; then again, the glassiness is what is barren to the work itself. And yet, in another view, our preconceived notion of glass is what is ultimately being refined herein. For so much of the substance of glass, as a pseudo-molasses form, contains the plasticity which Ms. Carley is keen to magnify.


It is in this magnification, juxtaposed with her reddish hues, which creates a sense of the cosmic in her compositions. There is a sense of celestial foreignness to her centrality of what amounts to be garbage washing ashore. Ms. Carley aspires to tinge the work with a shard of disappointment; this is difficult to capture because the colors really are juicy.

‘Crisp Erasure’ (2021) oil on canvas. Courtesy of Amelia Carley and Otra Vox Gallery.


We might expect more darkness, more somberness to depict a possible signifier of ecological disruption. But instead, we have something more encouraging than the ersatz judgment of the hopelessness of mankind and his selfishness which imposes a rudeness upon the planet and its population. We have surreal sentimentalism in confronting this sharded starry night.


Taking a step back, we have a positive reflection on the world which man has created for himself. One where she creates Glass Bottle Beaches, but also syrupy glazes which would otherwise not have been conceived of if the wreckages of broken vassals were not experienced firstly. It is this choice, this election, which creates within the human race an eternal spring of hope.




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