Women & Their Work presented a mixed media, two-person exhibition of painting and sculpture by Houston artists Sharon Engelstein and Jackie Tileston.
When we first saw each others’ work there was a strong sense of recognition and delight that the other artist was working with similar imagery, although realizing it in such different physical form.
There is something that links our work that is more than a common aesthetic sensibility. Both the sculpture and the painting has developed out of an exploration of abstraction. As artists we share an affinity regarding formal issues, but we also share a curious preoccupation with certain biological forms. Our connection, as artists is strengthened by our mutual biology. Perhaps it is possible that, as artists, we are somehow tapping into a reservoir of female/feminine biological images.
The sculptures are discreet, mysterious, and sexually charged objects. They are suggestive of organs, body parts, animals, and they might suggest stages in a metamorphosis of some kind. They are natural, bizarre, and often humorous. The surfaces are often worked and rubbed into a smooth, polished finish. The paintings are also abstract, otherworldly and organic. They play with the border between the familiar and the unknown, between recognition and revelation. Their sensuality comes through not only in the character of the forms, but also in the painterly surfaces and textures. These paintings explore the relationships between figure and ground, the solid and the ethereal, the sexual and the spiritual. There is a balance between the serious and whimsical.