"Hyacinths and Thistles" oil on linen painting by artist James Fisher

James Fisher: Imagined Worlds

09.05.2023 - 11.04.2023

Rosenbaum Contemporary Gallery

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An exhibition featuring oil on linen paintings from two series by British artist James Fisher.


In the first series, Fisher used fragments of drawings he made of the strange and beautiful plants in a local arboretum collaged together in his studio with images from dreams. His dialed-up palette is inspired by Technicolor films such as The Wizard of Oz, while the flattened planes of his landscapes reference Japanese prints and Indian miniatures. The resulting paintings depict imagined worlds—fantastic gardens inhabited by mysterious creatures.


The paintings in the second series, made in response to Wilhelm Müller’s libretto for Franz Schubert’s Winterreise song cycle and John Clare’s Recollections of Journey from Essex, reflect worlds imagined by the writers. Beyond Ice and Night and Fear and You Won’t Hear My Step attempt to capture in paint the Winterreise protagonist’s shifts between the present, which he perceives as threatening, and his pleasant memories of the past. The Air of Highland Mary depicts Clare’s childhood sweetheart, Mary Joyce, whom he mistakenly believed he had married, holding Clare in the form of an imagined animal, in this case, a turtle. The ethereal quality of the figure and the transient landscape, achieved through the accumulation of delicate stains and traces of powdered pigment, visually capture the mix of fact, fantasy, false memories and hallucinations in Clare’s prose.


Fisher received his Ph.D. in fine art from the University of Gloucestershire, his M.A. in Painting from the Royal College of Art, and his B.A. with honors in Painting from the University of Brighton, England. The exhibit at Rosenbaum Contemporary will be the first exhibition of his work in the United States. 


James Fisher: Imagined Worlds can be viewed during Rosenbaum Contemporary’s regular Boca Raton gallery hours, Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., as well as on its website www.rosenbaumcontemporary.com.



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150 Yamato Road, Boca Raton, FL 33431