Sunday, August 15, 2010

Corey McNally - Abstract Painter and Collage Artist

Corey McNally, Abstract Painter / Collage Artist
Corey McNally is a Minneapolis-based abstract painter and collage artist. He tries to capture small moments of beauty in his artwork. His mixed media paintings on wood are inspired by his surroundings: cloud formations, water, the moon over the horizon, cityscapes, and his dreams. He often works with matchbooks as a medium, either as individual art pieces, or together as collages. He has also created a cast of characters he calls My Invisible Friends, who can be found within his abstract landscapes. Almost all of his materials are salvaged and/or recycled.

What are you currently working on? How is this different from past projects?

• I have a few projects going currently. The paintings I’ve been working on are born out of my interest in lava flows. As I paint my larger pieces I also work on smaller pieces that I use as backgrounds for my cast of characters I call “My Invisible Friends”. I have just added an Owl and an Octopus to the group so I’ve been drawing them like crazy. My next collage pieces will consist of over 500 matchbooks, larger than any other collage I’ve done.


I Finally Found a Home

Do you find working in a series to be liberating or confining?

• Being able to have the confidence to build these larger collage pieces only comes from the knowledge I’ve gained working on the previous pieces. For me improvement and refining my vision is only accomplished by the crash and burn method. When working in a series I find that the sixth and seventh piece is closer to my original idea.

The Dream Came True When We Dreamed Together

Two Factions

What was the best advice given to you as an artist?

• Find the joy in the entire process.

Does being Minnesota-based influence your art?

• I like to think that all Minnesota based creative are influenced by the winters and they self imposed seclusion it sentences us to. It certainly was a catalyst for me. In 1998 I was staring at my TV hibernating on all these ideas. I decided to start painting and creating again. Taking that uneasy step and following through with those first projects gave me the confidence to continue. Those long dark winters fueled my need to express and surround myself with pieces that brightened my corner of the world.

Last Light

Which Minnesota artists do you enjoy?

Amy Rice – My wife and I added a piece of hers to our collection. John Diebel – His collage pieces that highlight Twin Cities history caught my attention. Jennifer Davis – Her colors and never ending imagination inspire me. Aesthetic Apparatus – They do an amazing job of melding the artwork with the bands message and the location of the show.

Indonesia - Surabaya

Are there any local artists that you would like to see profiled here?

New ones I’ve never heard from. I hope your site readers make recommendations and artists themselves submit their work to you. It would also be great to see locations highlighted that are sharing artwork that are not galleries.

If I were to follow you around on an “art day” in Minnesota, which places would we go? What would we see?

The Walker is wonderful and The Minneapolis Institute of Art is amazing but, I find the best way to experience and share the art scene in Minnesota is to visit some of the artist owned and operated galleries. Tarnish and Gold, spotArt, Rosalux, Altered Esthetics and Fox Tax are all located in NE Minneapolis. These galleries highlight artwork from the nationally known to your neighbor lady who paints.

Invisible Friends

What was the last exhibit you saw and what were your impressions?

• My wife and I visited The Hendershot Gallery in New York and we were lucky enough to meet with artist Molly Dilworth. We toured one in a series of rooftop paintings entitled Paintings for Satellites, to be seen and photographed via Google Earth. She spoke to us about her work and was able to guide us through her process. I was impressed by the succinct way she was able to communicate the ideas behind her work and the methods of achieving it.

Where do you go online for good art resources, whether to find a new artist, or to see what is going on in the art world locally and otherwise?

• Sharing my work, what inspires it and connecting with people is very important to me. I enjoy working on my tumblr site and posting and receiving feedback on my latest pieces. MNartist is a great way to find opportunities. Keeping track of upcoming events is easy via the calendar.

Do you have any exhibits or any interesting things going on in your life or coming up in the near future?

• I am most excited about my pieces currently hanging at spotArt gallery. The collage works consist of over 1000 matchbooks. I have really enjoyed the feedback that the pieces are getting. The show is up until September 2010, so stop in and take a look. I am also very excited with the pieces I’m working on now. One of my personal goals is opening a solo show. I hope to reach that goal before the end of the year.

The Artist At Work

Local Links Summary
(Most of these links go to Facebook pages. I encourage you to "Like" the pages of these artists and businesses)

Links for Corey McNally:
“like” My Invisible Friends on Facebook to find out where you can find my artwork

Links for the other artists and galleries mentioned:

Amy Rice –
John Diebel –
Jennifer Davis -
Aesthetic Apparatus –
Molly Dilworth –
The Hendershot Gallery –

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