At the core of Allison Gildersleeve’s work is a commitment to painting as both a representational tool and a coded language of mark and gesture. Using the genre of landscape as a structural framework, Gildersleeve twists space and color to upend the notion of nature as a quiet escape. Her landscapes are the opposite of the Romantic idea of the Sublime. Instead of awe-inspiring expansive vistas, her compositions are abruptly cropped, hedged in by the edges of the canvas as if the viewer is wearing blinders, giving us a sort of tunnel vision into her world.
Gildersleeve identifies herself within these landscapes, bringing them into the realm of self-portraiture. Her accumulative process is diaristic, initiated by a response to a particular place and time in the past. The paintings transform and grow as she folds in the day-to-day visual references from her current urban existence. Sources as diverse as the botanical designs of 18th century wallpaper and the jangled patterning of street graffiti can be found amidst the organic forms of her natural settings.
Gildersleeve received a Masters in Fine Art at Bard College in 2004, and a Bachelor of Arts from College of William and Mary in 1992. Gildersleeve has exhibited widely across the United States and abroad. Notable solo exhibitions include Asya Geisberg Gallery, New York, NY, Robischon Gallery, Denver, CO, Cynthia Reeves, Walpole NH, Valley House Gallery, Dallas, TX and Galleri Andersson/Sandstrom, Stockholm, Sweden. Selected group exhibitions include Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, NY, CRG Gallery, New York, NY, Johansson Projects, Oakland, CA, PS122, New York, NY, Sharon Arts Center, NH and Gana Art Space in Seoul, Korea. Gildersleeve has been awarded a NYFA Fellowship in Painting, and residencies at Yaddo, Millay Colony, and Vermont Studio Center. She currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.