Julie Gladstone is a Canadian artist based in Toronto, working in abstract painting, sculpture and installation. Holding a BFA from Concordia University (Montreal) Gladstone has had solo exhibitions at Walnut Contemporary, Navillus Gallery and GN Contemporary, and her work has been included in group exhibitions across Canada and the US. She is the recipient of the Artscape Award (2014) the CSCE Emerging Artist Award (2016) and has participated in artist residencies at Artscape Gibraltar Point on Toronto Island, SIM International Artist Residency, (Iceland) and MUSE (Montreal). Her installation “Extreme Cloud Gazing” was featured at the Grow-Op Contemporary Art Fair and her work has received media attention from CBC Arts, The Guardian, Toronto Life and Notable as well as support from Toronto and Ontario Arts Council and the Government of Quebec. A survey of her work was recently exhibited at the Department of Canadian Heritage (2018). Her work is found in private collections in Canada, the US, Germany and England, the City of Edmonton and the Canadian Society of Civil Engineers.
I am an abstract painter, sculptor and installation artist working at the intersections of landscape painting and mystic abstraction. The tradition of the Sublime is a big influence in my practice and I try to approach heavy environmental topics with humour. Much of my past work has been about creating a contemporary expression of the Sublime and anthropomorphizing meteorological phenomenon such as rainbows and clouds. My work explores climate change and extreme weather through the lens of archetypal mythology, metaphysical mapping and the alchemy of the urban environment. Major bodies of work have included: Extreme Weather Magic Carpets, The Secret Life of Rainbows, The Sky is Falling, Adopt- An Extreme Cloud, Metaphysical Cartography and Infinity Pool. I’m interested in providing perspective on our current era of human made environmental change, and to suggest the intersectionality of healing of the individual with the eco-system at large.
My latest series of paintings are more personal than previous work, exploring the topic of self care and the role of water and nature in the healing process. The paintings are based on personal experiences I have had of tapping into meditative inner states, releasing trauma and experiencing immersion in nature and in water. Though there are hints of figurative elements in some of the work, I feel that abstraction is an ideal medium to explore the intersection of inner states and the outer environment and much of this work focuses on depicting the interactions of the body, emotions, energy, light and water. An artist residency in Iceland and a retreat in Costa Rica during a recent sabbatical informed much of this latest series.
My painting process unfolds through a layering and removing process that results in a textured surface. My work references the tradition of mystic abstraction exemplified by the practice of artists like Mondrian, Hilma af Klint and Lauren Harris. The work is a contemplation of the energetic basis of the universe, the releasing of trauma, the alchemical process and the intersections of personal and global ecologies.
All images on this website are property of Julie Gladstone and may not be used or reproduced in any form without written permission from the artist.