September's Curator's Choice is a new painting by Julia Contacessi. Mount Olympus, which is made with mixed media on canvas, offers versatility from a design standpoint, but goes beyond mere aesthetics. There exists a soothing sense of other-worldly strength in Mount Olympus, which invites us to step back, unplug, explore, and reconnect. Read on to learn more about why we chose to highlight this particular abstract piece.
What It's About
At it's core, Mount Olympus is about the energetic forces in nature and the divine. "What might the mythical energy of gods look like?" asks the artist, Julia Contacessi. "If they could leave a trace in the sky, would it linger or only remain for a fleeting moment? In this painting, intensely saturated blues mingle with white and metallic gold to create a striking composition inspired by strength and the ethereal."
Where It Works
Mount Olympus is signed on the back of the canvas and wired to hang either vertically or horizontally, according to preference, which means it comes with a certain flexibility. While it could easily hang horizontally above a wide furniture piece like a bed or sofa, it can also work vertically above a bench, console, or on a wide open wall (see above). But no matter what, we recommend placing it in a space where one would go to relax - like a bedroom or lounge area. The cool wash of blues in Mount Olympus are pretty dreamy, to say the least.
Why We Love It
We love this painting for its subtle allusions. A metallic streak of gold leads the eye into an abstract composition before allowing it to get lost in a wash of blue. And that contrast in color is mirrored by the paint application itself, so that when one steps back, they're met with a striking sense of both softness and force. Whether you get lost in the details or just rest in its presence, Mount Olympus challenges us to use our imaginations, reimagine the world as we see it, and find peace in the act of physical and conceptual exploration.
In 2000, Julia earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Pratt Institute in New York City. Over the years, her eye for composition coupled with her love of painting, design and photography has earned Julia numerous awards in such publications as Photographer's Forum and Creativity along with inclusion into the Yale Robert B. Haas Family Arts Library Special Collections (ALSC) in New Haven, CT.
"When you layer on the paint just right, a new level of dimension is created," Julia says. "Combine that dimension with the exploration of color and I’ve just begun to capture something meaningful. My style is singularly focused on simplicity and beauty in the moment. My goal is to drown out the noise and clutter, to find a sense of calm through light. The end result is clean, fresh and modern."