Fragments of Light

Monthly Archives: January 2017

Thresholds of Mystery

The period between the celebrations of Christmas and Easter can be used as an occasion to walk through the Life of Christ and allow its mysteries to transform us. Moira Dryer’s glowing colors on sheets of plywood comprised of layer upon layer of diaphanous washes offer surfaces in which to plumb fresh mysteries.

Moira Dryer, My Eyes, 1989.

Moira Dryer, The Vanishing Portrait, 1990.

“We read the Gospels not merely to get a picture or an idea of Christ but to enter in and pass through the words of revelation to establish, by faith, a vital contact with the Christ Who dwells in our souls . . . ”—Thomas Merton

Dryer_not titled
Moira Dryer, Not Titled, 1989.

Artist Bio
Moira Dryer (1957–1992), Dryer’s distinctive painting method involved applying washes of either casein or acrylic paint to big squares of wood creating veiled, undulating patterns that could suggest an open landscape, the sea, or a soft freehand tapestry. This process was inspired by the thin paint surfaces of the Italian Renaissance frescoes. But her paintings rested firmly within the tradition of American postwar abstraction. Dryer said she wanted her paintings to be “constantly transmuting into a new identity.” That means she didn’t see painting as a noun — a thing just to be contemplated — but as a verb, something that does something, that happens, to us.