Dana Oldfather is a painter who has exhibited internationally and nationally in galleries and museums including Library Street Collective, Detroit, Zg Gallery, Chicago, Kathryn Markel Fine Art, New York, The McDonough Museum of Art in Youngstown, The Carnegie Center for Art and History in New Albany, and The University of Southern Queensland, in Australia. She was awarded the William and Dorothy Yeck Award for Young Painters, two Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Awards, and most recently, a Satellite Fund Emergency Relief Grant from SPACES Gallery, The Warhol Foundation, and The Cleveland Foundation. Oldfather has been published in magazines and journals including Beautiful/Decay, ArtMaze Magazine, London UK, and the book The Art of Spray by Lori Zimmer of Art Nerd New York. Oldfather’s work has exhibited at art fairs in Houston, Miami, Palm Beach, and New York, including Art on Paper. Her paintings are internationally collected privately and can be found in many public and corporate collections in the US including Eaton Corporation, MGM International, Bedrock Detroit, The Cleveland Clinic, and the prestigious Progressive Art Collection. Dana Oldfather currently works and lives just outside Cleveland, Ohio with her husband Randall and young son Arlo.
I explore taboos and moments that make one want to cuss. Traditional ideas about femininity and motherhood are questioned as women in this work bounce back and forth between getting it done and becoming undone. A woman’s work in the home and family filters grime and despair as the world pushes through her. In these paintings, figures are in motion in a landscape representative of freedom; the kind of landscape one sees driving out of town down the interstate. COVID has undermined how we care for one another and diversely impacted families. We are suffering from physical isolation while simultaneously feeling exhausted and overwhelmed by those we share our confinement with. We are burdened with the guilt of this and our desire for the company of friends, extended family, and fellow humans as COVID has sinisterly turned that affection into harm. Through allegory, exaggerated body language, color, and light I mirror an uneasy world distorted by apprehension. These portrayals of what it feels like to be a woman give prominence and dignity to the often invisible work that nourishes the lives of others; they implore those who do this work to ask for help when it is needed. These paintings underscore the inherent emotional conflict of parenting young children and the fragility of comfort and happiness in America today.
Catch Up (Green)
oil on linen 48 x 60 inches 2021
Catch Up (Yellow)
oil on linen 48 x 38 inches 2021
Night Lake Triptych
oil on linen panels 24 x 60 inches 2021
oil on panel 30 x 24 inches 2021
oil on linen 38 x 45 inches 2021
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