Reviews and Compliments

“Thank you for making this December Salon on Spirituality so enormously illuminating and expressive of our highest humanity. Your presentation was beyond extraordinary. A friend of mine in Maine remarked, “Gilah shows an entirely new way of seeing, yet it seems like an age-old truth to which we are innately drawn.” A further testament is the number of requests I am receiving from those who want to contact you regarding a video of your presentation, or a way to see Reading the Landscape again.”

— Carole Soucek King, INSTITUTE FOR PHILOSOPHY &THE ARTS’ SALON ON THE SPIRITUALLY CREATIVE LIFE

 

“Joy is the subject of Gilah Hirsch’s contributions to the exhibition. Her eight remarkable paintings survey a vibrant world of cells and globes floating in a watery cosmos, of pods and flowers and skin spiraling through the ether. Hirsch envisions a biomorphic universe populated by incipient life forms, shimmering in color and light, all vibrating to the music of the spheres.”

— Betty Ann Brown, ART SCENE

 

“Her exhibition involves a subjectivity of content rare in contemporary art. Hirsch’s revelation comes from deep inside the artist. Her painting technique now involves the layering of translucent glazes to create a glowing, luminous whole. Hirsch has visualized for us the profound sea change of the body and spirit that we may know from our own experiences, but which we never have been able to see before.”

— Ruth Weisberg, ARTWEEK

 

“The paintings are reminiscent of Paulo Coelho’s novels – all insight and ecstatic states. The strength of Hirsch as an artist is that she decoratively develops the surface and does not get scattered on narration.”

— DELO, Kiev, Ukraine

 

“The artist becomes the apologist and the defender of the environment – the ecological artist… She uses a microscope to create her works and examines in detail the oak bark, a lotus flower or a wheat-ear, and then she extracts those miracles from nature.”

— KOMMERSANT, Kieve, Ukraine

 

“Mysterious art… mystic requires a state of unusual concentration. It is clearly seen in the paintings of the American artist – they are in direct touch with the mysterious order of the Universe.”

— DZIENNIK, Krakow, Poland

 

“From the first painting she did at UCLA in 1967, Gilah’s work has been assertive and marked with a definite style. Always pictorial, her first series consisted of elements taken from architectural environments reconstituted as patterns of light. Such a painting is ‘Intent’, based on the experience of looking through an open tent flap.”

— ARTISTS OF THE SPIRIT

 

“In Learning to Fly in the Forest, artist Gilah Hirsch portrays nature as an ecstatic living presence, teeming with elemental spirits.”

— Suzi Gablik, THE ARTIST AS ENCHANTER

 

“Hirsch’s slide lecture provided further examples of how people could explore the healing power of the visual arts.”

— M. Stephen Doherty, AMERICAN ARTIST

 

“Ms. Hirsch uses the alphabet as a medium of her art …Hirsch demonstrates the continuing possibilities the alphabet gives to the imagination.”

— INSTITUTE OF SEMITIC STUDIES, PRINCETON, NJ

 

“Subtler …is the idea put forth in Gilah Hirsch’s Addiction to Conflict Between the Universal and the Human Embrace. The title alludes to the endless friction between self-gratification and global consciousness, while the image portrays a couple in sexual embrace intersected with a heroic elk’s head. In this paradoxical image, as in too few of the other rough-hewn concepts on display, the artist examines sinister causes of addictive tendencies rather than the ugly, sinister manifestations thereof.”

— Suzanne Muchnic, LOS ANGELES TIMES

 

“In her work, the body is the temple of the soul.”

— Gloria Feman Orenstein, THE REFLOWERING OF THE GODDESS

 

“For viewers who prefer social messages in subtler form, such artists as Gilah Hirsch offer relief from the predominantly literal works.”

— Suzanne Muchnic, LOS ANGELES TIMES

 

“Gilah Yelin Hirsch spends portions of her life in the wilderness, from which come her inspired writing and compelling paintings Hirsch proposes that an artist’s work can be on a larger scale than making products; it can also be a service to the world.”

— Mary Nelson, SOUTHWEST ART

 

“For Hirsch, the act of painting is not so much a process of invention or creation as it is one of releasing what is already known. To tap these springs of personal material is to hone awareness on all levels of being. Her work led her to the erotic mystical, to the dance of life that is the moment of every living cell…”

— Elinor W. Gadon, THE ONCE AND FUTURE GODDESS

 

“An opening to what we can’t quite see, that is, to the mysterious realm, underlies the nature paintings of Gilah Yelin Hirsch. Numinosity runs through her pictures like fire in a fire-opal. You feel it in the glisten of fermented light, dancing like burnished copper through the trees… Sometimes in Hirsch’s paintings, trees even learn to fly.”

— Suzi Gablik, THE REENCHANTMENT OF ART

 

“Lacy washes seem to float above the shallow water of the canvas. A rapid calligraphy establishes a vibrant linear tapestry over the surface, and the oil paints impersonate pastels. Each stroke, each gesture is charged with a tremendous energy and immediacy.”

— Betty Ann Brown, ARTWEEK

 

“Loose handling loaded with surface event, marks the approach of Gilah Yelin Hirsch to details and ordinary things observed in the non-urban environment.”

— Bill Lazarow, ART SCENE

 

“Hirsch produces eerie landscapes of animated trees in a timeless dance. Natural vignettes are also portrayed with the fantastic twist of a visionary eye. Hirsch’s respect and attraction towards a metaphysical beauty infuses her work. All these paintings portray nature with passion and tenderness for the pantheistic guises of nature. These new canvases are charged with vitality.”

— Kathy Zimmerer, ART SCENE

 

“The difference between Hirsch and many of the others (artists) lies more in an attitude toward life than in the way she applies paint to the canvas. Her work actually is an examination of life, moving toward the light.”

— John Bogert, THE DAILY BREEZE

 

“Her drawing skill is proven in a graphic mandala. The most unusual and promising of Hirsch’s images is in a painting on paper, Dorland Suite #4 where a triangular form hovers above the reeds of a lake, formally and symbolically establishing a perfect equilibrium between universally experienced abstract spiritual essence and personally encountered material landscape.”

— David S. Rubin, ARTWEEK

 

“The shade of Claude Monet must be pleased. Hirsch, however, goes beyond her intense optical sensitivity to nuances of time and season, and she catches in the reflective surfaces of the pond something of her own emotional truths. This visionary view of the pond throbs with buzzing and blooming life, it never sinks into the arbitrary or the chaotic. We are convinced of the power and ultimate order of the universe, not through the grandeur of some great landscape but rather by means of a mirror placed in an intimate and familiar site. The strong sense of mystery is therefore all the more astonishing. Hirsch’s hours of observation are rewarded by the sureness of gesture of a Chinese master. Hirsch’s painting cycle has progressed from contemplative and ethereal images to those that have the force of passionate revelation.”

— Ruth Weisberg, ARTWEEK

 

“Vining, twining forms pull apart to reveal seed pods and womb-like configurations. (Her) new work is subtler and richer, growing and changing, to explore pulsating growth in nature. Strong composition, teeming with fruit, flowers and tentacles.”

— Suzanne Muchnic, LOS ANGELES TIMES

 

“Hirsch’s paintings have developed to an extraordinary degree from her personal, intuitive growth processes. Hirsch’s willingness to allow this iconography to flow unresisted into existence has resulted in an intuitive and unanticipated revelation of the esoteric, mystical roots of her Jewish heritage.”

— Melinda Wortz, ARTNEWS

 

“Standing directly in front of her enlarged compositions you can see only color, not shapes. Yet backing away for a more distant view, the organic components of her paintings become clearer, more in focus.”

— MDP, ARTWEEK

 

“Her large heavily painted canvases relate occasionally to the disjointed visions of James Rosenquist; the quality of the painting itself — dense and earthy, impressed me the most.”

— James R. Mellow, ARTNEWS