Saturday, August 7, 2010

Ronald Sloan's Situation.........

Ronald Sloan has been obsessively painting his private world for over forty years. An examination of this almost intact, and vast body of work, exposes an alternate reality painted in a masterful and unique style. The human figure, deconstructed and then reconstructed into skeletal form, often exists in a world of fear, pain, trauma and sexual abuse. Geometric figures, grids, boxes, far off center lines, and numbers appear hand in hand with quasi human figures struggling to make sense of an unsettling world. The disturbing themes share the canvas with recurring symbols of comfort. The mathematical elements, along with tropical vegetation, and an extraordinary talent for laying down paint in a seductive manner give you a reprieve, allowing you to catch your breath, and gather courage to look once more.

Each painting is a mini drama, audience not required. Ronald Sloan paints his world to survive yet one more day in it. On the canvas, survival often depends upon being both mute and deaf. Mother is portrayed with her mouth covered, unable to speak out about the untenable life she leads. In one painting, words warn, "Do not HEAR the Forest Burning." The inclusion of explanatory text offers precious access to this curious reality. In response to questions about the nature or purpose of his work, Ronald simply states, "I paint."