Ilona Anderson is an artist from Johannesburg, South Africa who lives and works in Newton, Massachusetts. Anderson creates embroidery drawings and large-scale paintings with pearlescent ink, Lascaux acrylic and gouache on archival paper. The artist embraces the flat surface and channels the effects of growing up under Apartheid. Paints builds with thread and paper rendering subtle, sociopolitical motifs. Thread, for instance, exposes the dichotomy of an object that is both tangled and free just as the artist's recurrent representation of the zebra symbolizes the wonderment of an animal survives with black and white but is an object of trophy hunting.
Anderson works in series and presents her paintings as large-scale installations that extend across gallery walls. The reproductions presented in the gallery below are fragments of the artist’s What One Is (2013) that was exhibited at the Kingston Gallery. It appears similar to Dwell (2012). Black-and-white paper juxtapose at sharp angles, creating a resonant gray-scale effect as vibrant colors mix and move illusion throughout, with an array of winding stepladders that lead everywhere and nowhere at once. An image of the artist's most recent work appears above
Since 1981 Ilona Anderson has had many solo exhibitions that have appeared primarily in Connecticut, Massachusetts and South Africa. Anderson’s painting received official recognition in America with the 1982 Carnegie International Exhibition that was held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The artist has participated in dozens of group shows since 2002 and her work is featured in numerous corporate and private collections such as the Johannesburg Art Gallery, the South African National Gallery, Mobil Oil (SA, NY), Ms. Hazel Bercholz (MA), Ivan Chermeyeff (NY), and Mr. and Mrs. Peter Dixon (NY). In 2012 the Kingston Art Gallery, in Boston Massachusetts, hosted a solo exhibition for Anderson titled Dwell: A Drawing Installation: Cornered: The Zebra Suite. From May 1st to June 2nd, 2013 the Kingston Gallery organized a solo show for the artist titled What One Is.