During her 2023 artist residency at Park Towne Place, Philadelphia-based artist Madison Makala created a series of Romantic urban landscape paintings depicting views from the campus. While the Romantics of the 19th century focused on their individualistic awe inspired by the natural world, Makala’s focus is on the awe sparked by the environment that surrounds her - the city of Philadelphia.
Visually, Makala’s paintings are dark and moody- but it is her treatment of light that is the most captivating. Piercing, glowing, with hints of the sublime just beyond. The light here signifies the passage of time as the city ebbs and flows around her over hours, days, months, and years; the street lamps that click on at dusk, the gleaming blur of headlights on the highway in the distance. The perspective is that of Makala herself- still- both physically and in time. She holds her ground as the city moves and transforms around her.
About the Artist:
Madison Makala Greiner completed her undergraduate education through the dual degree program at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and the University of Pennsylvania. Born and educated here she is proud to represent Philadelphia by embedding it into her paintings. Cell phone towers, rowers on the Schuylkill River, the Manayunk Bridge, rowhomes, and so on. Madison is a painter who uses traditional oil painting methods as a foundation to contemporary painting. In 2019 she was awarded the Ramond D and Estelle Rubens Travel Scholarship which included a full tuition studio year at PAFA (2019-2020) and funded European study in the summer of 2019. In 2020 Madison graduated from PAFA with a certificate in painting She has received the Anne Bryan Award, the Louis B. Sloan landscape painting award, and multiple venture funds. Madison has actively contributed her art history knowledge to cultural institutions in Philadelphia. Her resume includes co-curated the exhibit Why Objects Matter for the University of Pennsylvania Museum in 2019. She is credited in the ICA catalog Ree Morton: The Plant That Heals May Also Poison for exhibition research. As well as working for the Association for Public Art and the University of Penn Museum. Madison is an active member of the lively art community of Philadelphia and regularly exhibits here.