I’m not saying I am a cave woman but on a subliminal level I get what she painted in her cave. I fill my studio walls with marks: at times awkward and careless looking ones. I submit to an internal drive to move, to be physical and to be alone. I want to leave a trail of light and atmosphere that defies my doubt. Ideas can’t do this for me; I need to re-route my energy and tap into something else, somewhere beneath the surface. I’m wide-awake watching my paintings as if they might leap out at me.
Virva Hinnemo continues to make eloquent, evocative paintings that link her uniquely physical process to a visual territory all her own. Hinnemo’s images are intimate and sublimated translations of things and objects delivered from a reservoir of visual annotations. Her language is spare and unaffected. Only what she genuinely intuits is for us to see. The virtues of paint are abundant but frugal, open-ended yet tough-minded. Hinnemo’s attitude is straightforward and not-to-be denied. If Motherwell made enduring images, Hinnemo makes hers persistent and resolute; her lyricism is of another kind. Hinnemo’s blunt inscriptions are made exclusively by hand and give the impression of signs or symbols observed directly from life and always on her own terms. She does nothing lightly. Her shorthand images are like words that pop into her head; she recites from a list: “chimney, radiator, orchid, basement, solar eclipse, fortune cookie, beats, tires, quiet, morning, wind, drive, lentil soup, blanket, questions, timetable, magic, tall grass, song, family, four feet.”