May 8, 2011

My expectations only serve me when they are thwarted," says Michelle Mackey about her current work. Mackey, who is based in New York and teaches at Southern Methodist University, says she came to this realization after wondering why she felt "secure with familiarity and insecure with change." Mackey's current series of acrylic paintings in a limited palette explores memory as though memory were fragments of geography. She works with polyurethane and sandpaper. Every small movement on the surface affects the entire work. For someone uneasy about change, she incessantly explores it, even as she explores that to which we are bound: memory. The viewer is given a small segment of a larger whole: a window, a door, a wall, markings. Each work also looks like a storehouse of memory. "If 'through a glass darkly' one can glimpse the whole," writes Mackey, "the portal of these moments must be glowing."

—Lil Copan