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Lynn Randolph, Installation view, Station Museum of Contemporary Art, 2012
Randolph’s paintings deal with the subject of death and grieving, a human experience that is almost exclusively processed in the subconscious mind. Based on her experience of losing her husband and the agony that comes with it, her despair and suffering occasion a true search for meaning. She expresses this experience symbolically and metaphorically in her work, providing a context for further processing and healing. By means of creative substitution, Randolph’s metaphoric references create new possibilities for subjective and communal expression and identification.
Animal metaphors and identification are very important in surrealist art. In ancient Eastern mythology birds are symbols of mortality, a spiritual symbol of the divine or of departed souls. In Christian art, birds are the supernatural link between the heavens and earth and often appear as saved souls. These birds give us the hope and reference of an afterlife. There is a healing effect in these paintings that relieves the fear, anxiety and depression, transforming pain into a source of courage, hope and psychological growth. Through these images the artist is able to honor and create a new relationship with the deceased.
Lynn Randolph grew up in Port Arthur, Texas. She earned her BFA from the University of Texas in Austin. Her paintings have appeared in many texts as they inform topics such as feminism, religion, cultural studies and contemporary art. Randolph’s paintings have been exhibited and collected in permanent museum collections and other public and private institutions including: Bunting Institute at Radcliffe/Harvard; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, DC; Arizona State University Art Museum; San Antonio Museum of Art; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; and the Menil Collection.
Lynn Randolph, “Breath”, 2001, oil on canvas
Lynn Randolph, “Lamentation”, 2001, oil on canvas