Cristi Rinklin’s mesmerizing paintings carry the viewer into new and spectacular territories. With their swelling shapes, billowing clouds of smoke, animated rivers, and blankets of fog in bright colors, Rinklin’s landscape paintings have one foot in the familiar real world and the other in a luxurious fantasy world. According to Rinklin, her work “… is made with awareness of the tradition of illusionism in the historical practice of Painting—its ability to create a simulated reality that psychically transports the viewer, and to function as a mirror that reflects the subconscious.”
To make her evocative paintings, Rinklin mines and combines images from various sources: canonical landscape paintings from art history, Google images, collected photographs, video games, virtual reality, and her own photographs made with the use of a drone. She creates a digital collage, which becomes the starting place for a separate large-scale painting. The world that she creates in each of these paintings, in the words of the artist, is “an uninhabited, detached fragment that floats in an ambiguous, abstract space . . . . The combination of tangible realism, abstraction, and ambiguity are intended to disrupt the viewer’s ability to ground or position himself in any particular time or space.” Part fantasy and part phantasmagoria, Rinklin’s paintings reinvigorate and reinvent the tradition of landscape painting.
Cristi Rinklin has had numerous national and international exhibitions at galleries and museums throughout New England, and in New York, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Madison, Baton Rouge, Seattle, Amsterdam, Florence, and Rome. Her paintings have been included in the 2010 and 2012 Northeast editions of New American Paintings. She is also the recipient of grants from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, Berkshire Taconic Artist’s Resource Trust, and Jerome Foundation Fellowship, and has been a Visiting Artist/Scholar at the American Academy in Rome. She earned her B.F.A. from the Maryland Institute, College of Art and M.F.A. from University of Minnesota. A Professor at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, MA, Rinklin lives and works in Boston. She is represented by Steven Zevitas Gallery in Boston.