Sarah McEneaney’s paintings draw us into her personal world with an engaging combination of intimacy, directness, and imagination. In her rich autobiographical paintings, every detail is accounted for, but the work itself is as flat, fantastic and miniaturist as the Persian, Indian, and Early Renaissance art that inspires her. Working primarily in egg tempera, McEneaney’s painting process is labor-intensive and does not permit frequent overpainting or corrections. She prepares her own paint from egg yolk and powdered pigment, and mixes her gesso (background surface) from powdered limestone and rabbit-skin glue. The paintings, built in layers, bear the tactility and intimacy of handcrafted objects. The ICA exhibition is comprised of approximately 60 works from 1986 to the present including panel paintings, works on paper and sculpture.
ICA acknowledges the generous primary sponsorship of Barbara B. & Theodore R. Aronson for this exhibition. We are also grateful for the support of Elaine & Melvin Finkelstein, Frances & Bayard Storey, and Pew Fellowships in the Arts, funded by The Pew Charitable Trusts and administered by the University of the Arts. Additional funding has been provided by The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, The Dietrich Foundation Inc., The William Penn Foundation, the Overseers Board for the Institute of Contemporary Art, friends and members of ICA, and the University of Pennsylvania.
The exhibition catalog was funded by the artist through the generous assistance of the Independence Foundation and The Leeway Foundation with additional support from: Linda Lee Alter, Anita Friedman Fine Arts Ltd.; Cheryl & William Geffon; Susan & Marc Howard; Jules & Connie Kay; SKR, Inc./Franklin Riehlin Fine Art and Melissa Franklin & Wainwright A. Ballard.
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