Joan Fabian

mixed media

"There is a cross-cultural gloss to these paintings. Fabian travels frequently, and it is not difficult to find hints of visual and cultural forms from many parts of the world in these reliefs. References to Southeast Asian shadow puppets, a charging bull, or a Samurai warrior may all be discovered in these vibrant and playful paintings.”

Leanne Mella, Curator for Smithsonian Institution’s ‘Revealing Culture’ Exhibition

"Fabian has used similar forms and colors in her paintings, but her new wall pieces have more depth and texture, breaking free of the frame to dance and dart around the walls of the gallery. Her shaped paintings feature vivid colors and somewhat psychedelic forms and patterns.”

"Untitled (Do I have to spell it out?)" camouflages an anti-war message with clashing colors and patterns. "Hyper-Dash," which gives the show its name, resembles a small child running in a blur of motion. "Wow Wow" is an explosion of color that almost looks as if it was shot out of a cannon.”
Dan Goddard, San Antonio Express News

“Joan Fabian works diligently and often brilliantly at being engaged in a globalizing world….. Fabian's delicately detailed paintings radiate Middle Eastern influence. She scans fabric patterns and paints sensual, organic forms in rich jewel tones over them. The suggestive figures seem to pirouette and quiver on the page, looking like botehs - the teardrop shapes in paisley patterns - or figments of Dr. Seuss' imagination.”
Elaine Wolfe, Art Editor, San Antonio Current

“quirky pastel drawings of benevolently surreal sci-fi creatures”
Michael Duncan, Los Angeles writer and art critic

Fabian's paintings reflect her interest in the decorative crafts and design making that evolved from a Fulbright experience in Pakistan. She transforms this impulse into otherworldly imagery creating a biomorphic surrealism that is playfully disorganized and open to personal interpretation.
Felice Koenig,

“Fabian’s brilliantly colored and patterned abstract forms play amidst decorative lines that imply an architectural space. Though not figurative in a familiar sense, these forms appear to be pointing, standing, and arching. The spatial composition of these forms upon the paper or vinyl gives them a confrontational sense; they appear designed to be hovering and facing one another….(the) physical disconnection also stimulates the visual ambiguity of Fabian’s forms in which one recognizes the familiar within the unfamiliar”
Wendy Weil Atwell, writer (from the catalog of Painters X3, Austin, Texas)

“…cool, witty, elegant, and arresting…”
Elizabeth McBride, art writer, ArtLies

“Quirky animated figures with a bold, singing, contemporary palette are patterned to look like textile and cartoon adaptations.”
Malin Wilson-Powell, curator of Art 1945-present
The Marion Koogler McNay Art Museum

“Fabian’s paintings manifest a depth that encompasses social issues, cultural stimuli and psychological references. Her images encourage use of the viewer’s personal experience to interpret the work”
Chris Jones San Antonio Digital City

“…Her images are arresting: a colorful blend of collage and opaque watercolor within swirling shapes deliberately reminiscent of certain images, but not exactly those images..”
Emily Spicer San Antonio Express News

“Many of the (paintings by Fabian) have an iridescent shimmer…depict elegant, fluid shapes in bright colors and vivid patterns.”
Kristen Walker Richland Chronicle Dallas

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