Alison Stinely’s ‘Nocturnal Emissions’ Distort Memories, Mediums

by Andy SmithPosted on

The dream worlds depicted in Alison Stinely’s sculptural paintings extend off the panel and into the psyche of the viewer. And from process to execution, the artist’s work hinges on blurred realities.

Her latest exhibition, “Nocturnal Emissions” at Ronald E. Holstein Gallery at the Erie Art Museum in Pennsylvania, runs through Sept. 17. The gallery describes this series as “investigations into personal guiding mythologies introduced to her as a child—myths that continuously grow and warp as time passes. Traditional symbolism mixes with private imagery to illustrate belief systems ranging from religious orthodoxies to superstition to cultural ideals of femininity.”

The distortions extend to the mediums implemented by Stinely. Figurative oil paintings are mixed with sculpture and digital imaging. Hints of the Old Masters merge with a modern perspective in the nine works displayed. Portions of the works loom over both the subjects and the viewer, whether depicting beasts, shards of glass, or lush flora. Much of the content may at first feel familiar, like fear, gender explorations, and Biblical narrative. Yet, so much of Stinely’s work seems to be personal imagery, rendering much of “Nocturnal Emissions” up for private interpretation, much like our own dreams.

In 2016, Stinely makes a transition from an instructor at Edinboro University of Pennsylvania to becoming an assistant professor of painting at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Va. This year, she was a finalist for the Kalos Art Prize.

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