Holly Keogh’s Oil Paintings Reflect on Memory, Exclusion

by Andy SmithPosted on

Holly Keogh’s oil paintings and collages simultaneously recreate and deconstruct the artist’s old family photographs and memories. Her “Synthetic Dreamers” series, in particular, implements distortion in a way that creates both intimacy and distance from the moments depicted in the work. The artist says that the concept of archiving—and the discernment involved—plays a vital role in her work.

“I appropriate old family photographs, specifically ones that were excluded from the family’s photo album and narrative,” the artist says. “I use those photographs to create oil paintings and collages that expose the ambivalence of any archival practice and supplemental narratives. I am interested in how an archive works in two directions at once: simultaneously wanting to complete itself and yet knowing that completion is impossible because something always escapes. I see the excluded family photographs as what has escaped and what can be used as raw material to construct an alternative version of the past, another temporal narrative image.”

Keogh is part of the Goodyear Arts collective of artists in Charlotte, N.C. You can see more of her recent work below.

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