The French, Montreal-based painter Maryline Lemaitre assembles her acrylic and collage compositions from recognizable fragments, abstract color fields and dreamlike visions to achieve an intriguing visual multiplicity in every piece. She stages what she calls “contrasts between ‘old’ and ‘fresh new’” amidst thickly layered acrylic paints embedded with found photos, illegible bits of graffiti-like scrawl, precisely drawn figurative lines and rectilinear areas of pure paint. Differentiated but also integrated, all these elements have a weathered, worn down sheen not unlike a Robert Rauschenberg wall relief.
The effect of bringing together these disparate ingredients within the same composition is quite beautiful and often surreal, but also tinged with nostalgia. In some a strongly painted figure or form will dominate, inviting a more narrative reading. Elsewhere Lemaitre juxtaposes textures, muted and bold tones, and controlled and wild abstract shapes, creating multifaceted compositions that reveal unexpected surfaces and surprising fluctuations of hue and line. These encounters between old and new, joined by layer upon layer of acrylic, always remain fresh.