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First Saturday Gallery Openings during Art for Arts' Sake | Downtown - 6 October 2018

3 - 26 October 2018

Press Release

JONATHAN FERRARA GALLERY proudly presents Paradise, an exhibition of new paintings by New Orleans-based artist Bonnie Maygarden. The show unveils works that reflect the innovation of the artist’s proprietary technique and characteristic style of hyper-real, trompe l’oeil paintings. At first glance, the work appears three-dimensional but upon further inspection reveals the incredibly detailed layers of paint. The exhibition will be on view from 3 to 26 October 2018 with an opening reception coinciding with the Arts District of New Orleans’ (ADNO) First Saturday Gallery Openings on Saturday 6 October, 5 - 9pm, in conjunction with ART FOR ARTS’ SAKE | Downtown.


Maygarden discusses the inspiration for Paradise . . .


Through painting, I seek to create imagery that harkens to the sublime nature of light and color. In creating this body of work I was inspired by fleeting moments of natural phenomena of light, such as rainbows and sunsets, that are just out of reach, that cannot be captured and must be experienced. The beauty of these phenomena stops us in our tracks, freezes time, and causes us to focus our senses on the visual. In creating these works I was interested in a perfection that feels unattainable and unbelievable. Using illusion allows me to ask the viewer to slow down, to question and absorb what they see. I want to create something with my work that must be experienced to be understood, like any phenomenon of light. I also seek to capture the essence of light through painting, using the glow, fade, and transitions of color. To me, color creates an emotional response, a fleeting happiness, a glimmer of paradise. ‚Äč

BONNIE MAYGARDEN is a multimedia artist who received her MFA in Studio Arts from Tulane University. The destruction of Hurricane Katrina caused her to take leave of New Orleans to further pursue art. Subsequently, she attended Pratt Institute in New York, where she received her Bachelor's of Fine Arts. Her work has been featured in exhibitions both nationally and internationally in museums, galleries and alternative venues including: Université Lumière Lyons (Lyons, France), Pratt Institute, Icosahedron Gallery (New York City), East Hall Gallery (Brooklyn), SALTWORKS (Atlanta), The Front (New Orleans) and New Orleans Creative Center for the Arts where she attended high school.


Several notable publications have featured Maygarden’s work; including, Gambit Weekly, NOLA DEFENDER, and INVADE NOLA. Curator and art critic Tori Bush has featured Maygarden’s exhibition “Hyper Real” in her Artist Spotlight. Her work was reviewed in ArtForum and Burnaway as part of  “Staring at the Sun” curated by Craig Drennan. She was featured in New American Paintings (No. 112, June/July Issue) concurrently with her premier solo exhibition at Jonathan Ferrara Gallery entitled “Desert of the Real”. And, she will be featured in the forthcoming Issue No. 124. She was recently selected, for the second time, for the Ogden Museum of Southern Art’s Louisiana Contemporary Juried Exhibition. Maygarden has been exhibited nationally and internationally at art fairs including:  Pulse New York, Miami Project for Art Basel Miami Beach, Texas Contemporary, Art Market San Francisco, the Seattle Art Fair, and VOLTA12 in Basel, Switzerland. In 2016, her work was featured in EXCHANGE, an international exhibition at Galerie Jochen Hempel, Berlin. Maygarden was also awarded a position at the Slade for the London Summer Intensive Residency Program 2016.


Maygarden’s work appears in the collections of former LACMA curator and Perez Art Museum Director Franklin Sirmans (Miami), private collectors Lester Marks (Houston), Myrna Kaplan (Chicago) and Susan and Ralph Brennan (New Orleans), and corporate collections of Advantage Capital Management Corporation, RPM Casting, University Medical Center (New Orleans) and Stanford University Medical Center. She has also been commissioned for many Hollywood feature films by numerous production companies including: ABC Studios, Flashfire Productions, Danni Productions, Georgia Film Fund Seven, Abby Normal Pictures, Lamb Productions, Furlined, LLC and The Goats, LLC.