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Cynthia Maurice  Fresh Cut: New Works on Paper

Cynthia Maurice, La Boheme, 2008























La Boheme, 2008
charcoal and wash on paper
35" x 27"
Courtesy of the Artist

New England Currents at the Danforth Museum

September 11, 2010 — November 7, 2010

Opening Reception September 12, 5 - 7 pm
Gallery Talk Wednesday, October 6, 12:30 pm


About the Exhibit

As co-jurors for the Danforth Museum of Art’s 2010 annual juried exhibition Off the Wall, MFA’s Jen Mergel and ICA’s Helen Molesworth selected Cynthia Maurice’s work Almost as First Prize winner, noting her willingness to break with traditional conventions and push a given medium to an open end.  “Cynthia Maurice’s Almost creates a new whole out of fragmented imagery on a cut and patched surface,” they noted in their juror’s statement, “suggesting correction, dissection, and hidden budding potential.”

Assertions have been made for decades that painting is dead or irrelevant, but Maurice maintains a near romantic belief in the power of drawing and the alchemy of paint.  For her, traditional techniques can be used to make relevant statements about contemporary themes.  Her current exhibition at the Danforth Museum of Art features cut and patched surface, as well as gestural mark making, in an exploration of our fragmented, contemporary lives.

Process is important to Maurice, and she considers her daily practice of meditation as an intrinsic part of that process.  Sounds and silences, awareness of breath, the fleeting moment are all part of her aesthetic, alerting Maurice to chance possibilities that come through the creation of art.  “I am attracted to everyday, taken–for-granted objects,” she observes, “which I use to explore ideas of transition & metamorphosis. I try not to force my preconceptions onto the work, but allow pure observation…to reveal meaning.”

About the Artist

Born and raised in the Boston area, artist Cynthia Maurice attended Pratt Institute before graduating with a BFA and MFA in painting from Boston University.  She later received a second MFA in illustration from the School of Visual Arts in New York.  Early on in her career, Maurice was selected for artists’ residencies at the Cummington Community for the Arts, Cummington, MA; Ossabaw Island Project in Savannah, Georgia; and the Millay Colony for the Artists in Austerlitz, NY.  She has taught studio courses at Wheelock College in Boston, MA; Middlesex Community College, Burlington; and the Art Institute of Boston.  In 1986 Maurice helped co-founded the Brickbottom Artists Building, a Somerville cooperative live/work environment of 120 artists located near Union Square, where she still maintains her studio. Maurice was selected artist/ ambassador to City of Somerville’s sister city of Tiznit, Morocco in December, 2009. In addition to her work as a painter, her editorial illustrations have been published in the New York Times, Boston Globe, National Law Journal, and The Washington Post

Maurice has exhibited in group shows at numerous venues, including the Mills Gallery at the Boston Center for the Arts, the Danforth Museum of Art; the Fitchberg Museum of Art and others.  She is a past finalist in both Drawing and Painting categories for Massachusetts Cultural Council grants, and in 2002 won a Massachusetts Cultural Council award in the category of Drawing, Prints Books.  A major retrospective of her work appeared at the Freeman Gallery, Albright College, Reading, Pennsylvania.  Her solo exhibition Fresh Cut appeared at the Newton Free Library during summer 2009.  In 2010 her drawing “Almost” was selected co-jurors Jen Mergel and Helen Molesworth as First Prize winner in the Danforth Museum of Art’s annual juried exhibition Off The Wall, on view through summer 2010.

Cynthia Maurice currently lives with her husband Richard Garrett, who teaches philosophy at Bentley University and with her daughter and grandson whom she helps raise.

More information about the artist can be found at www.cynmaurice.com.

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