In the paintings of Maya Gold we sometimes observe a grid of horizontal and vertical lines. This grid, reminiscent of a painterly apparatus meant to aid artists in organizing their canvas, is brought in Gold‘s paintings to the fore. Rather than disappear behind the painting‘s surface, it is suggested by the objects and landscapes on view, such as the interlacing pattern of a pavement (Cocktail Party, 2009) or the reflective surface of an anonymous-looking, glass-clad office building (Untitled, 2012). This somewhat playful materialization of the painting‘s scaffolding may also imply that the realm represented therein has willingly succumbed to the rules of the perspectival net cast over it.
But what first seems as a capitulation to the regime of perspective soon unfolds as a choreography of signifiers, knowingly played-out to a pervasive, all-seeing eye. In Restreet (2006), which also adopts a strict aerial view, we see three small figures carrying large paper arrows over their heads. The arrows, as if miraculously lifted from the surface of a road, are of a size befitting a gigantic viewer‘s eye hypothetically hanging from above; but it is precisely this over-sized proportion that makes the arrows collapse under their own weight, making them unable to point anywhere.
Most of all, in Gold‘s paintings it is a flat, cleverly structured sfumato of clouds that hinders the materialization of an accountable universe. Whether hinted at by their ominous shadows cast on firm ground or watery surfaces, or suggested by their reflection in glass; or whether painted directly — as in the thick nebulous formation enveloping two lonely ship masts above a stormy sea (Maritime, 2008) — it is often the clouds that are at the basis of both the doing and undoing of what is encrypted in the paintings. Thus, even a series of fantastic views in different shades (Echo, 2010), with sparse clouds hanging above an idyllic lake, offers less of a romantic escapade and more of an equivocal yet melancholic play on the reversibility of planes.
Text written for a brochure of the artist published by schir art concepts