Mara Korkola: In A Silent Way

September 12 - October 5, 2019

Opening Reception: Thursday, September 12, 6-8pm


Nicholas Metivier Gallery is pleased to announce an exhibition of paintings by Mara Korkola. The exhibition will open on September 12th and run until October 5th with an opening reception on Thursday, September 12th from 6 to 8 pm.


Whether looking down a country road or city street, Mara Korkola’s places are mysteriously quiet. Devoid of people, they depict the two times of day, sunrise and twilight, when it is light enough to see the silhouettes of trees and buildings but dark enough for solitude. Korkola works from her own photographs, editing and pairing them together to make compelling diptychs and triptychs. She likens this part of her process to that of a musician, specifically Miles Davis, cutting and combining different takes to create something new. Her pairings are not continuous panoramas but rather imply an observer’s pause and appreciation for the subtleties around them. Using the vantage point of a pedestrian, hiker and car passenger, the works are imbued with a certain level of intimacy and tension.


Korkola is best known for her works on small panels, a format that enables her to paint wet on wet and complete a single panel in one sitting. While carefully planned, it is the intensity and spontaneity with which the paintings are executed that gives her works their fluid and gestural surfaces. Scale is also a source of magic in Korkola’s work – she has an incredible ability to compress a world of information into a compact frame. Like keyholes, her paintings demand the viewer’s attention and focus, drawing one in and transporting them into another time and space.


I experience a real stillness, a real quiet, in these works. They’re dense and full, but there’s a hush about them… I guess it’s how I feel when I’m in that spot viewing that particular place: it’s the silencing of everything peripheral and the focus on that one place in that one moment. It’s the idea of being present, making the effort to truly experience something and not be distracted or only partially present.

– Mara Korkola


Mara Korkola graduated from the Ontario College of Art, Toronto (AOCA); Wichita State University, Kansas (BFA) and the University of Texas at San Antonio, San Antonio (MFA). She has exhibited in group and solo exhibitions in Canada, the US and Germany, including Painting as Paradox at Artists Space in New York, Synthetic Psychosis at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, Toronto, Sequence and Passage: Mara Korkola and Monica Tap at Cambridge Galleries in Cambridge, Ontario, and Commuter, a comprehensive solo exhibition of her No Place series of paintings at the MacLaren Art Centre in Barrie, Ontario. 


For more information on the artist, click here.