Mindy Solomon gallery and curator Ché Morales are pleased to present a solo exhibition by artist Nadia Waheed.
This recent series of work by Nadia Waheed marks a shift into new visual territory; sweeping mountainscapes, lush forests, still water – figure and nature weave together to build a picture of the internal narrative of the artist during these last eight pandemic months. Inherently autobiographical, the colorful, allegorical paintings reflect the quiet focus and intention the artist held for herself in the midst of the cacophonous sounds of modernity. Contending not just with the overwhelming sense of anxiety and fear felt in the face of a social and economic cataclysm, Waheed dealt also with the deterioration and near death of her father. The struggle of contending with this internal and external strife as well as the challenge of finding a way, not just to move forward, but more importantly, to make meaning, was the main objective of the artist. This work was borne from the tiny space between uncertainty and impossibility, a one inch gap where resilience lives, where survival lives. I climb, I backtrack, I float is the visual diary of someone attempting to find peace in calamity and clarity in muddied waters.
The paintings guide us through – Message From Janus (Day One) marks the beginning of our timeline and also sets the tone of the artist’s intention. A nod to the two faced Roman god, Janus, who symbolises new beginnings and transitions, time and duality, two figures stand facing each other, different silks hung from their necks. One grayscale figure stands eyes open, at the ready, hovering still over running water. The other in shades of muted brown stands eyes closed, seemingly listening; an electric line of yellow connect the two over the softened treeline. The grey and brown figures weave between rich color, the contrast mimicking the sense of displacement and emotional upheaval the artist felt for much of the pandemic. In The First Three Months (Mountains), a figure in shades of grey hovers high in the stratosphere, the curvature of the earth bending behind her. She is suspended above, far away, alone, above brown and orange rock. She can see everything and nothing at once.