INKA ESSENHIGH at Miles McEnery Gallery Through November 14, 2020
What the gallery says: “As found throughout Surrealism and other modern avant-garde movements, Es- senhigh’s paintings tend be uniquely episodic, while still sharing themes of flora and fauna.They are touched by a curious self-containment and an interiority of the force of imagination. Her works display dimensional narratives that require close-up viewing, creating a visceral dialogue, one viewer at a time. Each is marked by bright, rich color, and a decision to revel in the “little world” schema of psychology with a fluidity between people and their things.”
Why it’s worth a look: Who couldn’t use a bit of escapism right now? In American painter Inka Essenhigh’s fantastical world, the goblinesque creatures and their environments seem to be lit from within, whether cast in the cool light of the predawn morning or in the deep burnt orange of a Chinese restaurant.With nods to surrealism and animation, Essenhigh’s landscapes are populated by characters from folklore and mythology, in some cases existing only as faceless shadows. At a time where the real world is filled with screaming headlines and endless stressors, Essenhigh’s magic garden offers a lovely, transporting respite.
Miles McEnery Gallery is located at 525 West 22nd Street.