Inman Gallery is pleased to present its first solo show of paintings by Francesca Fuchs, How to Tell the Truth and Painting. Opening with an artist's reception from 6-8pm on Friday, September 14, the exhibition will be on view through October 27, 2018.
Francesca Fuchs makes paintings about place and self, looking to the emotional and intellectual intimacies of self-reflection through motherhood, friendships, domestic objects and spaces, as well as art historical references. Fuchs's work is wide-ranging in scale, from small canvases to public murals, and is characterized by a subdued palette, gentle lines, and gestural brushwork. The subtleties of her canvases underscore a rigorous investigation of the significance and traditions of painting: that is, Fuchs asks, why is painting significant in our emotional lives, how do we live with it, and what does it represent in terms of content, history, and sentiment? As Fuchs observes, "I want the paintings to feel really straightforward, like they just are what they are. And so, sometimes, every now and then, when something looks almost too virtuoso, I might scale it back a little bit, because I want a tiny bit of clunkiness in the painting so that they can just be, and be true..."
In How to Tell the Truth and Painting, Fuchs paints the objects left on her father's desk after his death. A paperweight, scissors, bookend, telephone, letter opener: these quotidian objects suggest a life of work, but take on new resonance after the loss of their owner. Indeed, each object becomes a meditation on memory and on how we process grief at its daily level. The exhibition opens alongside Fuchs's Artist of the Year exhibition at Art League Houston, titled Something. Both exhibitions are accompanied by an artist monograph, with an essay by Laura August.
These paintings, August writes, "are about those objects we collect in the moments before and after windows of grief open and close. How, if you hold a stone in your hand it means something different than if you hold a stone in your hand that you collected from your father's desk after he has passed. Things have an aliveness because of the love you have for the person who loved the object before you. Things become alive because they have also lived alongside us, because they will survive us. Things become alive because you can no longer hold the person himself."
Born in London and raised in Münster, Germany, Fuchs moved to Houston in 1996 for the Core Residency Program at The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. She received her BFA from the Wimbledon School of Art in London in 1993 and her Meisterschülerin from the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf in 1995. Fuchs has been awarded two Artadia Awards, four individual artist grants through the Houston Arts Alliance and the City of Houston, and the Hunting Art Prize. She was the 2017 Josephine Mercy Heathcote Fellow at the MacDowell Colony, and is Art League Houston's 2018 Texas Artist of the Year.