Eccentric Color: Celia Johnson, Conny Goelz Schmitt & Fran Shalom

NEW YORK, NY –– February 5th, 2021 ––  Kathryn Markel Fine Arts is pleased to announce an exhibition of new paintings by Celia Johnson, Conny Goelz, Fran Shalom.  Each of these artists work against the discipline of highly structured compositions to express a robust, distinct visual language.  This group show presents their work in conversation with one another to provoke new meanings and questions. 


Celia Johnson uses the contrast of the raw texture of her panels and the transparencies of her brushstroke to create layered, collage-like paintings. Her works are inquisitive and act as puzzles to be solved. Her focus is on the play of color and form and how these interact on the picture plane. There is a modernist sensibility to her paintings which manifest as non-referential, rhythmic, geometric abstractions. Celia Johnson has exhibited in group and solo shows throughout the United States. She was most recently featured at the North Carolina Museum of Art, and has work in the corporate collection of Credit Suisse.


Conny Schmiitt works with the unique patina of heavily used, vintage book covers to create dynamic, geometric relief sculpture, collage and assemblage. Her work is informed by her studies in Sinology and German literature and her diverse, cultural experience growing up in Germany, living in Taiwan in her 20’s and then moving to the United States. Conny Schmiitt has exhibited her work internationally and received several awards and recognition for her work. In 2016 she was named sculptor of the year by the Chief Curator of Boston University in the CAA’s 69th members’ prize show and in 2018 she received the Juror’s Choice Award at the National Prize show in Cambridge, MA. 


In Fran Shalom's world, atypical shapes and meanings seem to burst out of whatever structure she puts in place. Like Johnson, she defines her work as modern abstract painting, but with a pop twist. She juxtaposes formal and playful expression and pares down her shapes and ideas to a simplified state. She uses elemental shapes and hard controlled edges, to balance the chaos of modern life and create an appearance of control and order. Fran Shalom has exhibited in several group and solo shows nationwide and her works are in the collections of many institutions including The Metropolitan Museum of Art and Brooklyn Museum.