The Shape of Hope: Batia Lowenberg Dares to Find a Happy Ending
“Art can be a form of worship, play, labor, dancing, freedom, fooling around, and serious pursuit all rolled into one,” says Batia Lowenberg in an interview with Art Mami.
Based in Florida and currently a resident at Zero Empty Spaces, Batia creates abstract, carnivalesque paintings inspired by an “urban-tropical-cosmic” aesthetic, a self-created style that “attempts to bring opposing difficult realities together.” Batia’s poetic description of her work is just as colorful and chaotic as the paintings themselves: “As an artist-activator, my function is to release energized images which visually turn up the heat where surface skins, shards of story, and ineffable glory collide […] in developing an urban-tropical-abstract language, the work incorporates a street art approach with a percussive touch.”
Big Pop, Batia’s most recent body of work, sees the prolific artist continue her deep dive into the nature of duality. Although her work is typically nonrepresentational, Batia had numerous narratives in mind when creating the oversized shapes appearing throughout Big Pop. “Shards of narrative emerge from an abstract language of bold color, fresh shapes, non-verbal cultural references, and a street art immediacy of mark making and line work,” she explains. “Multiple stories, sometimes difficult ones, appear almost familiar yet hold a sense of mystery and completeness as I ‘scratch’ at a larger existential meaning for what is happening around us,” she explains.
With a “whole body” approach to painting, Batia uses a range of materials and techniques to achieve her signature urban-tropical-cosmic style. Layer upon layer of bright marker, flat acrylic shapes, and dripping house paint create a visual playground worth a few spins on the merry-go-round.
Tackling everything from military invasions and the refugee crisis to personal safety and the future of freedom, Batia’s freewheeling work floats like a red balloon in a gray, war-torn world. She notes, “I attempt to wrestle down the tragedy and trauma of this world in a search for a buoyant hopefulness of presence and happier endings.”
“Art can be a form of worship, play, labor, dancing, freedom, fooling around, and serious pursuit all rolled into one.” — Batia Lowenberg
All photos published with permission of the artist(s).
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