Currently living and working in London, Early is known for her figurative paintings with street art influences. Working in oils on aluminum panel, the artist adopts tropes from the history of Western painting, seamlessly merging figuration and abstraction. Drawn from her own photographic sources, Early’s meticulously rendered figures evoke both romantic and renaissance paintings in their allegorical functions, suggesting pleasure or pain, agony or ecstasy. Says the artist, “I’ve always been interested in opposites in my work and exploring themes which can have a dual interpretation.”
Regarding her new five-part mini-series depicting a female figure in various states of rise and fall, Early shares: “The paintings take inspiration from the ‘phoenix’ (an immortal bird associated with Greek mythology and many other cultures). Phoenix is associated with the sun and is destroyed by flames only to rise again reborn from its ashes. The predominance of red and warm tones throughout these paintings are a reference to fire; from embers to roaring flames, these paintings aim to portray the cyclical nature of life; a continuous cycle of birth, death, rebirth, and resurrection.
The figure spins solitarily through the darkness, alluding to our sun and the infinite other stars in deep space and drawing a micro and macro parallel between the individual experience and the totality of the universe.”
Additionally, the gallery is offering a limited-edition print based on Early’s painting “Stata Mater” , which are signed and numbered by the artist.
Born in London in 1980, Early grew up in Cork, Ireland and graduated from the National College of Art and Design (NCAD) in Dublin in 2003. Since then, the artist has been accruing a list of solo and group shows in Dublin, London, Los Angeles, and New York. In 2014, Early was one of eleven artists to make up a global multidisciplinary group project, to contribute an art film, pioneered by Irish rock band U2 and inspired by their thirteenth studio album Songs of Innocence (more info here). Alicia Keys, one of world's best-selling musicians, is also a fan of Early. Keys attended one of Early’s exhibitions in Los Angeles years ago, saw the artist’s piece “Passage,” which influenced her to write the song “Zebra’s and Airplanes” (more info here). In addition, Early’s work has been featured by The Irish Independent, Irish Times, The Verge, Juxtapoz, Beautiful Bizarre, and Hypebeast, among others.