Alison Stinely was born and raised in Erie, Pennsylvania. She received her BFA in Painting from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania and her MFA in Painting from Indiana University located in Bloomington, Indiana. She is an Assistant Professor of Painting at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia.
Alison’s work has been shown in many juried and invitational exhibits nationally. She has also been the recipient of many awards and honors and is a two time winner of the prestigious Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation Grant. Her solo exhibition, Nocturnal Emissions, was featured on Hi-Fructose.com and her work Rib Meat has been featured in issue 198 of Juxtapoz Magazine. Alison’s work has recently been showcased in solo exhibitions at Ghost Gallery in Brooklyn, New York as well as Gilded Splinters at Linda Matney Gallery in Williamsburg, Virginia. Her work is in many private collections both domestically and abroad.
Q&A WITH ALISON STINELY
What concept or narrative is behind the painting?
My works are investigations into personal guiding mythologies born of religious orthodoxies and cultural ideals of femininity. The recurring female figures displayed serve as proxies to my own experiences and expectations; carrying the burden of standards imposed by society and, consequently, self. Religious and mythological references mix with private imagery to display the damage inflicted by overarching systems of power and the constructs they impose, challenging the ways that people conform and behave within societal norms. The combination of historic and contemporary imagery emphasizes that these structures have persisted through time; regenerating familiar narratives that are as significant today as they have ever been.
How much time is dedicated to the execution of the work before you actually start the process?
This depends on whether I’m considering an entire series of work or one, single piece. For example, I have just recently built and gessoed five cradled panels for a series of related paintings. The planning process for this series has spanned roughly six months. Because it is both conventional material handling and digital automation that animate the work’s narratives, my studio practice combines many processes including 3D modeling and printing, diorama construction, and observational painting techniques. This demands that quite a bit of forethought to assure that the pictorial design of the paintings and the over-exaggerated frames that accompany them must be cohesive.
What is the price range of your art?
I currently have works for sale between $3,500 and $16,000.
Are you represented by a gallery?
How true are you to your artist statement?
It is important to me that the imagery displayed within my paintings supports the narrative, although I allow for unexpected painting surprises along the way. For example, if during the process a new color choice subsequently affects the initial design, I will rework areas or simply allow a splatter, drip, or new shape to take up space. These painting issues do not usually throw the narrative off of the rails. It is also important for me to leave a bit of ambiguity—you may even call my work surrealist—I want the viewer to pull some of the weight.
How much time does it take you to create an artwork?
Anywhere from two-months to over a year. I usually have at least three paintings in-progress at any one time.
What is your ultimate goal for your artwork?
I want my work to evoke an emotional response and demand viewer engagement beyond formal responses. Emotional engagement can be achieved simply by representing a figure within a work (we all like people watching) but can be amplified by an intense palette, gold leaf, and volumetric forms protruding from the painting’s surface. I want the work to scream at viewers, give them a giggle, and perhaps even disturb them.
Do you ever venture out of your creative process to try out new things?
Yes, my current works are the product of trying new things. In 2014 I began to incorporate three-dimensional forms as framing elements along the edges of my paintings. This was achieved through traditional form-building and altering found objects. My process has since expanded to include 3D modeling and printing and CNC machining, both of which have offered much more customizability and fluidity to the process.
What is the average size of your artwork?
The range of scale can vary widely: recent works measure anywhere from 25×35 inches to 89×98 inches.
What is your education, exhibition history, awards, and collections?
How many works have you sold recently?
I have recently sold three with two additional sales pending.