Dreams. For me, making art is dreaming, being open, allowing forms, space and light to flow slowly through me, like the absorption of oil into cloth. Not illustrations or literal translations, my art transforms ancient myths to mysterious worlds where the boundaries between underworld and waking earth are traversable, terror coexists with joy, and loss yields to renewal. My art pieces, inspired by The Ramayana, Ovid’s Metamorphoses and Apuleius’s The Golden Ass, are quiet landscape narratives in the guise of abstract explorations. Emotional tensions are transformed into forms emerging from light and dark, suggestions of figures in space. Beginning with myths, I hope to create epic spaces where the world at its least understandable is made concrete.
For years I painted landscapes in rural northeastern Pennsylvania, and that landscape space is in my bones and blood. Now, rather than suggesting the light and space of an actual motif, my landscapes are cast deep in the rich colors of mythology and poetry – the language and pictures we create to understand the world at its least understandable.
I have been at the center of the anti-fracking movement since 2008, and though lyrical and semi-abstract, my art indirectly relates to my environmentalism. Commercialism has turned our humanity into a deadly pastiche of plastic emotions: We buy to camouflage our alienation, uncontrollably burning fossil fuels that threaten our very existence. By expressing our deepest emotions, my art reflects my belief that to save life as we know it, we must return to our spiritual centers where we value our fellow human beings, and our needs flow with the ecological life forces of the planet.
Brief Bio: Alice Zinnes has had seven solo exhibitions in New York City, including at Causey Contemporary Fine Art, Janet Kurnatowski Gallery, Tribes Gallery, and The Art Center at Queens College, CUNY, a number of solo shows upstate NY at the Alliance Gallery (Narrowsburg) and CANO (Oneonta), as well as been included in many group exhibitions. Her work has been reviewed in The New York Times, New York Newsday, New York Arts Magazine, Art New England, The Queens Tribune Revolt Magazine, Art News, The Indypendent, Abstract Art Online and From The Mayor’s Doorstep. She has twice been interviewed on NPR’s affiliate station, WJFF. Zinnes has received awards from the National Academy of Design, and fellowships from the Virginia Center for the Arts, and Cummington Community For The Arts. She is in many private and public collections. Currently Alice Zinnes is an Adjunct Full Professor with CCE (tenure for adjuncts) at The Pratt Institute and Adjunct Associate Professor at New York City Technical College, CUNY. Since 2008 she has also been a strong voice in the fight against fracking and the movement towards a fossil-free, sustainable world.