She is known for her exuberant large-scale depictions of nostalgia-laden interiors that blend historical allusion and theatrical illusion. The paintings evoke the good times of yesteryear, with lush interiors that are always deserted, yet speak eloquently — if obliquely — of recent use and inhabitation. The sense of loss is counterbalanced by the richness of textures, patterns, and references — and especially by vibrant, clashing colors, which display an irreverence to the subject-matter. The work also stands out for its hallucinogenic spaces, with interiors fracturing and distorting from realistic representation into abstraction and surrealism, and “teetering,” as she puts it, “between claustrophobic and agoraphobic.”
Her paintings are inspired by diverse references – Baroque and Rococo interior design, cowboy culture, Las Vegas architecture, theatre and music –their dominant scale pulling the viewer into the psychological space of the spectacle. The paintings oscillate between celebration and desolation, with extravagant ornate features appearing to collapse and drip across the pictorial plane. Night at the Palomino, 1984 (2007) describes a scene at the legendary Hollywood nightclub that, in its heyday, played host to artists such as Johnny Cash, Patsy Cline and Willie Nelson. Koenig House (2007) features Case Study House #22, as immortalised in Julius Schulman’s iconic black and white photographs of the classic modernist building, this time rendered in vivid Technicolor. Live in the Black Pussy (2007) pays homage to artist Jason Rhodes’ eponymous installation that was housed in a vast warehouse near Crow’s studio in Los Angeles.
A publication of Rosson Crow’s work, Night at the Palomino, was published by Honor Fraser in 2007. It contains an essay by Norman Klein, who describes the work as “massively architectonic, very immersive, … like a Baroque castle inside a theme park, historical paintings inside a half-baked memory system, inside a desire that has been marketed, but never satisfied.”
Crow completed a residency at Cite Internationale des Arts in Paris in 2006 and has had solo exhibitions at Honor Fraser , Los Angeles; CANADA , New York, and Galerie Nathalie Obadia , Paris. She will be having a show at White Cube , London in 2009