Gwen O’Neil


Gwen O’Neil

Across the Sea, 2023
Acrylic on canvas
40 in. x 30 in. / 101.6 cm. x 76.2 cm.

Born in New York City and currently based in L.A., abstract painter Gwen O’Neil earned her BFA from the Savannah College of Art and Design in 2015. Her work has been shown in New York, Miami, Los Angeles, Dallas, Seoul, and Milan.

With layers of stippled brushstrokes in spiraling waves of color, her palette is reminiscent of the Fauvists and Post-Impressionists. Her compositions can be read as cosmic diagrams, ethereal particles coalescing in atmospheric gradients, but their origins are far more earthly and humble—the winding roads that weave through the hills and canyons of L.A., the murmurations of starlings along the shores of East Hampton, New York, and the dramatic seaside cliffs in Cornwall. There are patterns hidden in these forms, algorithms programmed into the natural world.

Despite their cascading waves and whirlpools of color, O’Neil’s work induces a feeling of serenity. Her work is a visual oasis, a respite from the digital overload of modern life, and a manifestation of nature’s underlying design.

O’Neil’s practice continues in the tradition of Krasner, Frankenthaler, and Elaine de Kooning, all of whom found creative freedom in the warm watered light and sea air of Eastern Long Island. Recently, O’Neil returned to her family’s home on Long Island, not far from the Pollock-Krasner House, to create a new body of work for Untitled Art Miami 2022, presented by Anna Erikson and comprised of three new series of work—Field Paintings, Open Paintings, and Spiral Paintings.

About her choice of subject, she adds: “My concern for the environment has intensified my interest in nature.”

Courtesy of the artist

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