Mary Lipian is a California based artist who completed her undergraduate degree at Yale University and subsequently earned two graduate degrees in Psychology at the University of California, Los Angeles and at Boston University. This educational background in Clinical Psychology remains a key influence in her work. Mary has studied art at the San Francisco Art Institute; and has exhibited in France (Paris); in the U.K. (Eastbourne); and in the U.S. (San Francisco).
The current exhibit of recent works of Mary Lipian captures Flight in all of its ambivalence and all of its ambivalent ambiguity. The pieces on display exude comfort yet anxiousness; launches yet endings; soarings that crash to the ground — or never really leave it. Love cloaked in bitterness. Despair glowing in the halo of hope.
FLIGHT is a glimpse — perhaps, as captured through an airline portal?– into the Flight of Imagination of an American artist.
The previous show, “Catwalk,” took flight when Mary was in Milan attending Fashion Week. The elegance, beauty, and glamour of the runway shows led to thoughts of women and of human femininity in general; how it is sometimes honed to its most beautiful (fashion; facial adornment; shimmering in light); sometimes degraded to its most primitive and base (prostitution; rape; sadistic exploitation by supposed loved ones). In turn, such dichotomous images provoked Mary to muse upon the similarly bipolar, mercurial opposites of those other creatures who frequent the world’s Catwalks: Cats themselves! Arrogant but loving; intimate but aloof — the feline experience of extremes is almost akin to a commentary upon the extremes projected by humans upon their own, female homo sapiens.
In this show, cats in their myriad moods dance the Catwalk of life, literally acting as a Greek Chorus commenting upon the female humans who dance along the Catwalk with them — be it sparkling in the spotlight of feminine loveliness set aloft; or smothered in the darkness of feminine fragility humiliated, and crushed. All the while, a cluster of critics — “The Scents” — stand grouped together in the rear and observe: Removed; Untethered; Supreme.