Anna Conway

Gallery Affiliations: American Contemporary

Region: Northeast


My paintings depict fragments of unfolding narratives in which ordinary people are suddenly confronted by forces greater than themselves. The viewer is privy only to the instant of disruption, not to its cause or effect. I am drawn to the emotional, poetic moment (in a manner usually stereotyped as feminine) in the lives of our underemployed sad dads, our awkward little brothers, our guys working construction—the people (mostly men) who aren’t supposed to have access to fear or beauty or melancholy or much else beyond what the job requires. The scenes are invented from scratch, which results in everything being equally defined and in focus. My protagonists are placed in settings that are familiar but just slightly outside the everyday. Ambiguity is derived from our inability to know subjects’ internal epiphanies. Often, these are the quiet moments that change lives, the ones we try to express before coming to the embarrassed conclusion that they are indescribable in their simple profundity: “How was work?” “Well, I . . . it was . . . um, you know.”