JULY 15, 2022- SEPT 4, 2022

Clara Nulty’s solo exhibit, “Palimpsest” opens July 15th at the Firehouse Art Center, featuring works that push the viewer to imagine the space between perception and memory.

Palimpsest. A palimpsest is a manuscript or piece of writing that has been scrubbed/erased to make space for a new piece, though still bears evidence of the previous life. Clara Nulty writes that her work “is a meditation on absence and presence”. In the work, she examines what it means to have existed, touched, interfered with a space, landscape, or object. The paintings are detailed, often working as a trompe l’oeil, but they are also restrained and witholding, alluding to the past presence of a person.

“My work represents the omission inherent in observation. Observational painting requires a meticulous study of a subject and asks that the final product be accurate. This quest for accuracy is contradictory in nature, as the limitations of human
senses and materials will always leave a gap between subject and rendering.”

Clara’s interest in observation feeds her fascination with this gap. “There is electricity in the unbridgeable gap between our sensory perception and attempts to communicate, through visual means or otherwise, what we have perceived. It is the space between that compels me to paint.”

Throughout the exhibit, Clara chooses unique substrates, including furniture, wood, paper, and the wall itself. Her markmaking tools consist of paint, pencil, ink, found materials, and sentimental papers. The work is visually layered, alluding to the multiplicity of human perception and processing.

“Palimpsest” opens on July 15, 2022 and runs until September 4, 2022 at the Firehouse Art Center, 667 4th Avenue,

Opening weekend kicks of with an artist talk on Sunday, July 17 at 3pm. Exhibit reception will be held on 2nd Saturday, August 13th at 6pm-9pm.

Artist Bio: Clara Nulty is an artist and educator based in Colorado. She holds an MFA in Painting from the Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, MI and a BA in Studio Arts from Carleton College in Northfield, MN. She has shown at galleries across the states including Colorado, New York, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, and Michigan. Recently, she has exhibited at Ortega y Gasset Projects in Brooklyn, NY and the Frank Lloyd Wright designed Smith House in Bloomfield Hills, MI.


Clara Nulty will discuss how she manipulates negative space, substrates, and surface texture to allude to personal narrative, shared experiences, and forgotten memories.

Firehouse artist talks give the community a chance to delve deeper into the artist’s creative process. They offer the artist an opportunity to share background information allowing viewers to gain a better understanding of the art on the gallery walls. Attendees are welcome to ask questions at the end of the talk, as well as tour the new exhibit with the artist at the end of the talk.


Artist Talk with Clara Nulty