Working with a diverse range of material and imagery, I paint from my perspective of the present-day Anthropocene Age, which includes depictions of climate, flora, fauna, women, and humanity’s intersections with nature and technology. These images, informed by Donna Harraway’s affinity for the non-human, function as metaphors for environmental change, both from the standpoints of women's evolving, empowering cultural roles and of climatological shifts. During this contemporary moment in which women demand to govern their own anatomy, my paintings verge between figuration and abstraction in order to express the nuanced relationship between the inextricable mind and body. Being a woman requires navigating both abstract social constructs of sexism and concrete narrative moments/circumstances in which I uphold my body’s autonomy. I encapsulate these instances though my commanding paintings that vary in size from intimate window to herotic scale. Transforming my human frame and mind into an energized force of nature, I intuitively employ formal push-pull devices, roaring color, and gestural brushwork in order to engage, entertain, and assert my body in the work. Often working with wet into wet paint, I apply vitality and freshness in my mark making so that my physicality is present in the painting and in the surrounding space in which the object inhabits. Similar to the affective nature of music inspiring dance, a vibrant painting that occupies physical and psychological space can help fill individuals with confidence, energy and optimism.
Notes from a studio visit with Jan Avgikos in spring 2017:
"Walking into Gabrielle’s studio is like walking into a fiercely exotic, techno-futurist time zone – somewhere between here and there – that borrows from science fiction and ethno-anthropology on its way to over-whelming the viewer with sheer scale and material diversity. Whether in big muscular paintings, delicate etchings, digital photographs, or even gelatin sculptures, the futuristic and the oddly antiquated intertwine and energize to bedazzle the viewer with a sustained color-infused sensual overload. Motifs are shared, whether animal bones or intertwining wires, and are often arranged as contemporary 'detritus paisleys' in whose profusion we delight.
There is also plenty of undertow in the work. The paintings, activated by heroic scale, scream with energy: color is keyed to a constant high pitch, tidal waves of gestural imagery roar across their emboldened surfaces. The repetition of forms—things as simple as old square nails or metal staples—march in unison across surfaces and suggest an arcane hieroglyphics, like a cultural language gone extinct.
The sublime is front and center in Gabrielle’s work. It’s informed by Romantic painting, by Abstract Expressionism, by CGI cinema—oh, and let’s not forget “real life” dilemmas that rim our existence and threaten widespread extinctions. Don’t look now, but Gabrielle makes art for the Anthropocene—annihilation anyone?"