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"In the presence of nature, a wild delight runs through the man, in spite of real sorrows.” - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sullivan Goss is pleased to announce our third solo exhibition for Phoebe Brunner. Over the past 40 years, Brunner has created one of the region's most unique and recognizable bodies of work – a blend of dreamy forms and compositions that are rooted in a deep knowledge of the local environment.

At the outset of her career, Brunner described her work as “surreal” with iconography that was full of references to the Western landscape. Her brushwork and compositions looked back to American art from the 1930s and 40s; that is, it was both Modern and representational with an emphasis on lyrical lines, bold colors, and repeating forms. Her 2016 Funk Zone mural Hurry Home looks back to this period with its mysterious red tree house and windblown rope ladder floating above a sea of agave plants that become agricultural rows in the distance. 


Over the years, her paintings have become less overtly surreal and more visionary. The landscapes she has painted for this newest exhibition are exaggerated for emotional effect, but they feel like home to anyone who has lived in the area for very long. Brunner does not often paint specific places, but she paints the feeling of an area so well that people often swear that they recognize some canyon or hill signature. 

Begun four years ago, her “Seeding Series” continues to inspire her. Flowers yearning to reproduce, to spread their petals as far into the sun, the wind, and the rain as possible have evolved and grown in this new body of work, following the great success of previous experiments. 

Phoebe earned a BFA from UCSB, but she also trained at Otis Art Institute, Chouinard, and the University of Guadalajara. Before being represented by Sullivan Goss, she was represented at the Ellen Easton Gallery in addition to numerous other galleries up and down the West Coast.



2:59  |  Jeremy Tessmer

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