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Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Anna Held Audette retrospective opens this Friday at Reynolds Fine Art in New Haven

Reynolds Fine Art
96 Orange St., New Haven, (203) 498-2200
View of the Past: Anna Held Audette
Feb. 1—Apr. 3, 2013.
Artist Reception: Fri., Feb. 1, 5—8 p.m.

Press release from Reynolds Fine Art

Reynolds Fine Art is pleased to present Anna Held Audette in her first solo exhibition at the gallery. View of the Past will showcase a selection of Audette’s paintings, prints and drawings that came out of her illustrious career as an artist, writer, and teacher, spanning over fifty years.

Anna Held Audette: "Italian Forms"

Subjects such as abandoned factories, ships, bridges, and the dilapidated space launch site, Cape Canaveral, have been memorialized through Audette’s canvases. Stemming from her underlying interest in structure, Audette’s paintings are an exploration of the speed and effect of decay on modern industrial powers. These objects and locations, however, are not depicted as foreboding omens of the demise of industry, but rather, the artist has approached them with sympathy in feeling their neglect and emptiness. Audette’s paintings possess reverence for their subjects and act as symbols of hope for rebirth. These works are both realistic and abstract as her tendency is to focus on shapes, spaces, shadows and light. This technique has allowed the artist to capture the spirit of her subjects. Audette said of her work, “The relics remind us that, in our rapidly changing world, the triumphs of technology are just a moment away from obsolescence. Yet these remains of collapsed power have a strength, grace and sadness that is both eloquent and impenetrable. Transfigured by time and light, which render the ordinary extraordinary, they form a visual requiem of the industrial age.”

In addition to Audette’s paintings, Reynolds Fine Art will be showing a selection of works on paper by the artist. Where Audette’s canvases tend to convey auras of resilience and power, despite their subjects declining condition, her prints and drawings possess the softer quality of a delicate, personal narrative. These works create an intimacy with the artist and reveal more of her internal conflicts; lighthearted and simple thoughts are juxtaposed with images that elicit a darker, more contorted, emotional response.

In 2008 Anna Held Audette was diagnosed with Fronto-Temporal Degeneration, an extremely rare form of Alzheimer’s. Since her diagnosis, Audette’s cognitive functions have declined, but with the assistance of a former student she has carried on with painting and drawing.

Reynolds Fine Art, located at 96 Orange Street, is part of the 9th Square’s historic district in downtown New Haven, a new up and coming area to shop, dine, and experience art. The mission of Reynolds Fine Art is to contribute to the economic and cultural ecosystem through vibrant samples of artwork, not only in our home neighborhood, but also in the Lower Chapel district and in New Haven as a whole. Periodically shows, demonstrations, lectures and workshops are held to infuse New Haven with diverse aspects of the art world.

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