Victoria Crowe: Real and Reflected
Solo show transforms the Scottish Gallery into a tranquil haven at the Edinburgh Art Festival
This article is from 2014.
Stepping in to Victoria Crowe’s exhibition out of the bustle of Edinburgh mid-festival is like finding an oasis of calm. Her delicate, multi-layered paintings, with titles like ‘Considered silence’ and ‘Ordered Reflection’, are still and thoughtful, quietly intriguing.
Often, she lays down layers of collaged images within an ordered framework: winter trees, flowers and fruit, a face from a photograph, a fragment of a painting. Her surfaces are worked to look like aged plaster. Landscape (often West Linton or Venice, where she has her studios) is contained within the same frame as elements of still life, interior and exterior sit together. Almost all are flooded with light, from the pale gold of morning to the saturated blue of evening, or the rich russet of sunlight hitting a terracotta wall. There are reflections in mirrors, in water, in thought and memory.
Particularly striking is the wall of winter paintings, tree silhouettes against the blue of light fading on snow, a single hare dark against the background, half-real, half-mythological. Crowe is an artist at the height of her powers, who has found a way to hold image and metaphor, past and present, thought and idea in the same pictorial space.
Scottish Gallery, 558 1200, until 30 Aug, free.