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Frances Ferdinands

Toronto, Canada Born 1952
There are no exhibitions for this artist

Acknowledging the Western Pattern & Decoration movement of the late 70s and 80s, and its current resurgence, and realizing that decoration (somewhere between figuration and abstraction) provides the underpinnings of the visual culture of many non-Western traditions, these paintings characterized as Cultural Intersections (series)hover somewhere between the representational and the abstract. Drawing on historic objects, murals, tiles, textiles, wallpaper as reference, and creating a mix of nature imagery, patterning and ornamentation the paintings create narrative and tangential connections reflecting intersections, collisions and migrations of various cultural visual languages from South Asian to Middle Eastern to Western. An eclectic mix of botanical plants and animals, imaginary flowers, cliched palm trees, each piece is worked in detail and delicacy and I strive to make each work meaningful and beautiful.I see beauty as a form of resistance.

My intention overall is to create enduring bonds by amalgamating both Western and South Asian concepts, belief systems and visual languages. Through this synthesis I try to speak to the in-between space of varied social and cultural realities I inhabit. The resulting works are a reflection of my hybridity as a Sri Lankan-born Canadian in articulating issues as I see it from this unique perspective.

Sri Lankan born, Canadian Artist Frances Ferdinands has exhibited her acrylic paintings for over three decades in group and solo exhibitions in such diverse places as Paris, Bogota, Honolulu, the continental United States and Canada. She has received numerous Arts Council Grants and her work is held in corporate, private, and museum collections including the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) . Her paintings are featured in two Art books, RETHINKING ACRYLIC, and ACRYLIC INNOVATION:60 Visionary Artists. Most recently she was commissioned by the Royal Canadian Mint to design the 2019 Solid Gold Multi-Cultural Coin. In March 2020 she will be having her first solo exhibition in London England.

Her work is generally created in series that have a specific thematic focus ranging from the personal to the political. These have been important subjects for her expression of concerns regarding the social and environmental conditions of post-modern society.

Joan Murray, noted Canadian Curator and Art Historian writes:

She (Ferdinands), brings to painting an intelligent, exploratory consciousness.

Virginia Eichhorn, former Director/Curator of the Tom Thomson Art Gallery writes:

Frances Ferdinands work is characterized by technical facility, richness of color, and breadth of vision.. She addresses subjects of profound universal significance, yet does so through personal metaphor and imagery. Engagements with her paintings is always a satisfying and enriching encounter.