Jackson Junge Gallery is pleased to present its first solo exhibition of 2024, Vibrant Echoes, featuring the most current collection of painter, Anastasia Mak. Known country-wide for her colorful cityscapes and landscapes painted in a distinctive style, Mak delivers a series of new paintings showcasing her ever-evolving exploration of color and shape.

For the past four years, Mak has been gradually transitioning her style and subject matter, painting more landscapes, and adding natural elements to her cityscapes. This approach can be seen in “Neon Chicago”, featuring Chicago’s iconic skyline contrasted by a vibrant leaf motif that fills the sky. The muted tones of the skyscrapers compliment the bold colors Mak uses in the sky and lake; tiny windows lit with neon lights draw your eye into the buildings themselves.

While Mak has enjoyed painting cityscapes, the artworks in Vibrant Echoes primarily consist of her new focus, capturing the energy of the natural world. When speaking about this, Mak stated, “We are constantly surrounded by vibration and energy in a city or nature. What ties the cityscapes and landscapes together is the vibrancy and dreamlike essence of the paintings.” She describes her style as expressionist, and painting landscapes allows for more improvisation and a different energetic flow throughout her creative process.

One of Mak’s passions is her love of travel. Hiking and camping all over the world is what has sustained her inspiration to paint. When it comes to painting a landscape, Mak insists that is better to have visited the place, to transmit the energy of the area into the canvas. While out on the trail, she often commits the visuals of a location to memory rather than taking the time to sketch on-site. This method seems to complement her expressionist style of painting, allowing for more emotion and memory to find its way into her artwork.

Two pieces in the exhibition that capture this are “Autumn Fields” and “Red Dancers”. Both pieces feel like the memory of a beautiful moment, with their vibrant colors and dramatic compositions giving you the feeling that you are on the trail with Mak, discovering a hidden place for the first time. Chicago isn’t just known for its iconic skyline but the marsh and prairie around and within it. When it comes to natural areas in Chicago, Mak finds the beauty of Lake Michigan is hard to ignore; but also mentions Maggie Daley Garden, Lurie Gardens, and Northerly Island as great places in our city to experience nature and recharge. Mak mentioned in an interview:

Each painting in this exhibition tells its own story and each is intended to inspire wanderlust and memory. A handful of pieces are not identifiable places, but hopefully echo each other, even if they are different places.

Moving forward this year Mak wants to spend more time in front of her easel after a busy 2023 in Chicago. She is looking forward to a few international trips which are sure to result in some stunning new works. Stay tuned!