The paintings featured in Evidence of Grace serve as Genesis Tramaine’s creative rumination on the many trials and tribulations that have come to define 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic, the resurgence of racial tensions in North America’s mainstream discourse, and the Black Lives Matter movement that has shifted our social consciousness. Searching for a way to make sense of what she found to be troubling in our society – injustice, discrimination, and a lack of care for each other – Tramaine began her quest for answers.
As Tramaine often does when faced with a problem and seeks to process events occurring in the world around her, she looks inward and engages in deep prayer. Tramaine’s prayers provided a spiritual spark that catalyzed the creation of the paintings in Evidence of Grace. These paintings are a visual ‘sermon’ that articulates her faith, amplifies her relationship with God, and provides a sanctuary for a world in need of healing.
Genesis Tramaine is a devotional painter who produces work that adroitly intertwines figurative and abstract mark-making into the pictorial plane resulting in the cultivation of a unique visual vocabulary. Every brushstroke is channeling the pain, fear, anguish, optimism, and joy that we all feel as human beings but can’t always articulate. Looking at a Genesis Tramaine painting is a reminder of what it means to be ALIVE, PRESENT, and connected to the sacred. Her work requires a different kind of viewing that encapsulates the importance of history, the power of religion, and the metamorphic impact that visual art can have on society.
Evidence of Grace is a creative escalation for Genesis Tramaine, imbued with a new level of pictorial movement resulting in a series of visually arresting paintings that continue to present the artist’s ideas, meditations, and expression of faith. The body of work exhibited in Evidence of Grace, arguably Tramaine’s best, serves as an inflection point in her practice. The pictures highlighted in the exhibition are bursting with color, vibrating with rich line quality, and reflect the production of an artist who is genuinely in-tune with their creative capacity.
The pieces featured in the exhibition are larger in scale, bolder contours, and showcase Tramaine’s journey towards mastery as a painter. As a self-identified Black Queer Female Bodied painter from Brooklyn, Tramaine finds shelter from the world’s ills through prayer, song, movement, and painting. The act of painting is a cathartic space to commune with God and deepen her spiritual connection. Through this ritual, Genesis transcends into the flow of painting as a divine vessel that engages with the canvas.
The flash of the spirit has set the foundation for the artworks that Tramaine creates, filled with chromaticity and energetic linework that has come to define her oeuvre. The linework evokes the urban landscape and spaces that have shaped Tramaine’s identity growing up in Brooklyn. Often oscillating between hard and soft marks, her drawings within the portraits that she constructs is crucial in her painting.
These marks necessitate the viewer to look closer with a keen eye at the layers upon layers that encompass each work in the exhibition as they have something new to reveal to those who actively engage the work. This exhibition is evidence of Tramaine’s growth, artistic conviction, and understanding of the transformative power of contemporary art to guide us from the “darkness to the light.” Evidence of Grace delivers the power, majesty, and spiritual intensity needed for our society to comprehend art’s ability to reframe how we see ourselves, each other, and the world around us.