“To create one's world in any of the arts takes courage.”
~ Georgia O'Keeffe
Throughout the duration of the lockdown, Sabra Moon Elliot often had dreams about the desert. Her dreams involved cacti, warm colors and often portals, windows, doors and other areas that one might enter through. Ever exploring the space with painting and ceramics by utilizing geometric shapes, her work started to take on another level. Working in a small scale, her palette changed and started to mimic what she saw in her dreams. It wasn’t until a few months into the pandemic that she, her husband and daughter decided to drive cross-country in search of the places that she had been dreaming about. They went to New Mexico, Colorado, and Big Bend Texas. She marveled at the landscape, the unfamiliar mountains and hills jutting into the sky, the red earth, the green cacti, and the vast almost endless sunsets. Wanting to create positive and negative spaces in her artwork that mimic portals, she subconsciously is inviting or proposing a place for those present to enter. Her family experience out West played a huge role in the work that she made and continues to make in her East End studio.
For example, she was inspired by the proposed danger of mountain lions, and the possibility that one could attack her young daughter. The fear however, led to an artwork in which she envisions the all-seeing nature of the mountain lion’s eye. there is something to be said about what it takes to own a particular feeling, a particular environment, and the particular sense of place in one’s practice. Elliot was able to reach deep down into the space through the practice of meditation. When meditating like dreaming, she would often envision the desert! It was in these dreams and meditations where the artist realized that she was able to use her artwork as a way to bring the inside and interior life outside. Many of the Works titles also give previews to this mentality. Titles such as A Visitor (2021), Sage (2021),Night Dimensions (2021), and Another Entry to The Moon (2022), all lend themselves to mystical experience. Focusing on a mix of abstract elements along with some representation, a piece to look out for is a pair of clay sandals. Elliot wants to use the metaphor of the shoes as a way for visitors to the exhibition to literally walk in her experience. What is so special about this concept, is that it could never happen in the waking world. Ceramic shoes, while beautiful, would shatter upon the first step. In this way, the exhibition allows for a dream of one’s own to occur. The artist uses a comfortable, human scale, making the work and her vision easily accessible. The disruption is subtle and could be a change in perspective or a cactus out of place. With so many portals to go through, which one will you choose?
~ Katy Diamond Hamer
Sabra Moon Elliot (b. 1980, New York, NY) received a Bachelor of Science in film from New York University, and studied art history while at Umbra Institute in Perugia, Italy. Growing up she explored different mediums of art such as painting and film and attended art classes at the National Academy of Design. Her work has been exhibited at the Tribeca Artists Underground in New York City and SK Designs in Louisville, KY. She has exhibited locally at Ille Arts in Amagansett, NY, as well as the Fireplace Project, and Studio 11, both in East Hampton, NY. She first exhibited with Tripoli Gallery in 2015. In 2018, she had a two-person exhibition with Mary Heilmann at the gallery titled WAVY. In 2019, she exhibited alongside Kurt Gumaer and Mary Heilmann in a Tripoli Gallery container at The September Art Show at The Bridge Golf Club, Bridgehampton, NY. This is her fourth solo exhibition with the gallery. The artist lives and works in Bridgehampton, NY.
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