Mixed  Media Collage Paintings

Barbara Smith Gioia’s mixed media collage paintings represent her continuing exploration of space relations among shifting planes and interactions between line, color and shape. Working within the modern tradition of nonobjective abstraction, Smith Gioia enjoys a certain freedom from literal associations. As is, the viewer is invited to enter into each work without preconceived notions of how to experience the painting.

The works incorporate collage made from painted abstractions on paper, monotype prints, silkscreen prints, charcoal and ink. Through the juxtaposition of disparate elements that push, pull and direct the eye, each work falls together into a cohesive whole offering the viewer an alluring entry for navigation as the works continue to reveal themselves over time. The artist’s hand, evident in each painting, provides another perspective in which to approach the work. Improvisation plays a big part in her process as change is part and parcel to all of her paintings. The works can be colorfully vibrant yet rich in surface texture. The tension between discord and harmony is what ignites this work for the viewer and her paintings sing with the play of these dynamics.

At their essence one could say that the works explore states of perception and being. Each painting is a reflection of and journey through life in a moment, day, years. 


Bill Kooistra, artist and writer
Goshen, NY