In New Paintings, Sarah Gamble leaves behind any hints of figuration, a marked departure from her previous work. Here, Gamble presents us with what appears to be both the firing of our brains’ neural pathways (inner space) and the expansiveness and cosmic connectivity of celestial bodies (outer space). Gamble skillfully creates depth of field through layers of underpainting, glazing, variances in matte and gloss finishes, and spray paint on top of which she laboriously paints fields of dots, dashes, and interconnected lines. Gamble makes energy visible, but transcends the representational and enters the realm of meditative abstraction, whereby her paintings invite us to think about existential questions regarding our relationship to the universe.
Gamble’s paintings can be situated within a broad context of abstract painting and other modes of art making that engage with consciousness, hallucination, the cosmos, cognitive mapping, and the sublime. Ross Bleckner’s constellation paintings, Vija Celmins’s depictions of the night sky, Yayoi Kusama’s dot paintings and installations, Gego’s exploration of rhizomatic structures, and Australian Indigenous artists who employ painted dots as a means of mapping the landscape and denoting the subject’s relationship to the sacred are among the artists who, like Gamble, employ abstraction as a means of making sense of who and what we are within and outside of ourselves.
Sarah Gamble lives and works in Philadelphia. She has exhibited at Philadelphia venues such as Philadelphia Art Alliance, Fleisher Art Memorial, and Fleisher/Ollman. Gamble has shown elsewhere including Edward Thorp Gallery, New York; Abington Art Center, Abington, PA; John H. Baker Gallery, Kutztown University, Kutztown, PA; Anderson Museum of Contemporary Art, Roswell, NM; and Adams and Ollman, Portland, OR. She received a BFA from the Corcoran School of Art and an MFA from the University of Pennsylvania. In 2009,Gamble was awarded a Pew Fellowship in the Arts. Residencies include Millay Colony for the Arts, Austerlitz, NY; Bemis Center for Contemporary Art, Omaha, NE; Atlantic Center for the Arts, New Smyrna Beach, FL; Ucross Foundation, Clearmont, WY; Vermont Studio Center, Johnson, VT; and Roswell Artist in Residence Program, Roswell, NM.