One of the defining characteristics of the work of contemporary artist Victoria Angelina is the explosion of color against fine line, essentially obliterating the typical ‘either or’ boundary we tend to adopt between the two. In any given work, just when you think color takes precedence, the eye is tricked into making out shapes from thinly wrought lines over the canvas. Yet there is no struggle or imbalance between the two; rather, they act as the yin and yang to one another- that is, each is only successful because of the other. This interplay is best felt in her abstract scenes, which, devoid of any firm narrative context, read like a rorschach test. Different viewers derive and create their own conclusions: in Let’s Go Down to St. Pete, my sister sees a Wright-brother style airplane crafted from thick strokes of orange acrylic paint, while I’m drawn to what I think is a distorted smiling face in the upper right corner.
The artist’s process is unmistakable, and penetrates both her abstract and figurative works. The latter similarly features the same balance between forms that are molded from color and those molded from line. Here, sculptural and classical qualities co-exist with those expressionistic and abstract. Bartholomew (above) is a masterful example of Angeline’s figurative canvases; she is remarkably skilled and self-assured, and her portraits reveal the confidence in her process. Her works could only be produced by someone entirely self-taught, as Angeline is- someone who has explored, experimented, and honed their craft free from the subconscious restriction or rule imposed by teacher or predecessor. They feel like a character study, and would be entirely at home in the hands of a seasoned collector of Lucian Freud or Wassily Kandinsky. Her works are utterly beautiful, and slightly odd to the eye, but without fail they are always oddly satisfying