This psychedelic painting oscillates between abstraction and figuration across the picture plane. Instead of sketching or initiating a composition with a concrete idea in mind, the artist begins each piece with decisive abstract marks, undulating lines and a layering of color. Each formal development on the canvas informs the next until the totality of choices begins to evoke characteristics of a body—eyes appear and gaze lazily, hair and eyelashes unfurl and arms and legs spring into motion.
Mullen uses repetition of lines and a stutter of pigment to allude to the passage of time or rapid movement. Through the artist's work, a visible tension between density and open space remains palpable regardless of composition. Mullen's work favors exaggerated compression or an illusion of elastic expanse. The artist's practice does not oppose sculptural dimensionality with flatness, abstraction with representation or solidity with fluidity—rather, each is a complementary half of an enigmatic whole.
Artist created deckled edges on paper
Bridget Mullen’s paintings oscillate between abstraction and figuration, flatness and dimensionality. The artist employs decisive and intuitive mark-making to create psychedelic compositions where density and open space are in visible tension. Mullen works without sketches or initial concepts, allowing each choice to inform the next; the resulting compositions evoke the body—eyes gaze lazily alongside unfurling hair while limbs spring into motion.
Bridget Mullen was born in 1976. The artist received an MFA from Massachusetts College of Art in Boston, Massachusetts and a BAE from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa.
Solo exhibitions of Mullen’s work have taken place at: Nathalie Karg in New York City (2022); Shulamit Nazarian in Los Angeles, California (2021); Helena Anrather in New York City (2019); and Annet Gelink in Amsterdam, the Netherlands (2018).
Group exhibitions that have shown Mullen’s work have taken place at: Anne Barrault in Paris, France (2021); Bosse & Baum in London, UK (2020); Wild Palms in Düsseldorf, Germany (2019); Fahrenheit Madrid in Madrid, Spain (2019); DC Moore in New York City (2018); and L21 in Mallorca, Spain (2017).
Mullen’s work is in the collections of: the Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam, the Netherlands; the Anderson Museum of Contemporary Art in Roswell, New Mexico; and the Carolyn Campagna Kleefeld Contemporary Art Museum in Long Beach, California.
Mullen was the recipient of a New York Foundation for the Arts Painting Fellowship in 2021. The artist was a recipient of a studio from the Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program in 2017–2018. Mullen was a participant in the Shandaken Paint School from 2018–2019.
Mullen has been awarded residencies at: Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Skowhegan, Maine; MacDowell Colony in Peterborough, New Hampshire; The Jan Van Eyck Academie in Maastricht, the Netherlands; The Lighthouse Works in Fishers Island, New York; Roswell Artist-In-Residence Program in Roswell, New Mexico; the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Massachusetts; VCCA in Amherst, Virginia; and Yaddo in Saratoga Springs, New York.
Mullen’s work has been featured in Juxtapoz, Hyperallergic, Maake Magazine, and ArtMaze.
Mullen lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.