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Phyllis Gaughran

Phyllis Gaughran's paintings and collages fall into the Abstract Expressionist Movement that originated in New York around mid 20th century.  Her work is closely related to the women who form the second wave of abstract expressionism such as Helen Frankenthaler, Lee Krasner and Elaine De Kooning.  Phyllis' unique style combines color, texture and composition that must be explored. 

Phyllis Gaughran

Interlocking Confidence

c. 1980 Acrylic on canvas

42 x 72 inches

Phyllis Gaughran's paintings convey a strong relationship to nature and the forces of nature. Her work, such as "Interlocking Confidence," share common elements with the practitioners of Abstract Expressionism although in a gentler form than the artists who originated the Abstract Expressionist movement in New York after World War II such as Jackson Pollock and William De Kooning.


"Interlocking Confidence" puts layer upon layer of blues and yellows that build up to the finished painting. The arrangement of forms, color fields and color washes is almost symmetrical and the composition harmoniously balanced.


The preceeding explanantion is adapted from "Fun, Fine Art and Fantasy: Robert Harris Rothchild Collecion." (Written by Robert Rothchild. Published in 2012.) The following commentaries are adapted from the same volume.

Phyllis Gaughran

Colorful Sandstone

1990 Acrylic on natsume

43 x 71 inches

In "Colorful Sandstone" the orange colors set off against the very colorful grays. Each color field is composed of hues and shades which blend harmoniously to make each area interesting by itself.  The right side of the painting protrudes and has the most brilliant orange color, yet it is balanced by the darkness on the painting's left side.

Color, texture, light, design, composition, shape and movement are key elements in Phyllis' style of non-objective painting. She often chooses natsume--a Japanese rice paper--as her medium for creating texture in her painting. The artist has become a master with this medium as is shown in the collage, "Colorful Sandstone" where she tears the paper and overlays the different pieces and shapes in her composition. 

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