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“Exploring the luminous, emotive potentiality of colour, tone, texture, Elaine Woo’s paintings, hung in the dilapidated Emerged space on Bell Street, are intense, focused mediations on portraiture. Lonely, contemplative figures, sipping a drink or gazing out of the painting, look dissolute, solitary, against backdrops of vibrantly connotative colour, sometimes echoing the grim, existential black of a Francis Bacon portrait. One of the figures, lit by an ethereal light that gives one side of his face a ghostly pallor, sits lonely with a glass, like an Edward Hopper painting, whilst in another the same figure, seemingly squeezed into the canvas, is backed by a wooden yellow which makes it seem as if he’s inside a coffin. Unafraid of grim or potentially disturbing work, Woo’s paintings are psychologically penetrating and almost voyeuristic in their glimpses of interior worlds or evocative in mood. Dark, sexual, beautiful and sad, her figures and the spaces they inhabit are fascinatingly pensive.”

Jasper Hamil, Skinny Magazine, a review on ‘Portraits’ at Emerged space, 2006

Elaine Woo MacGregor in her Edinburgh st
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