In Carl Grauer’s latest suite of paintings for Carrie Haddad Gallery titled A QU(i)E(t)ER Interior, the Kansas-born visual artist elicits a disregard for distinction between the animate and the inanimate. Throughout, Grauer characterizes the home he shares with his husband Mario in Poughkeepsie, paying special attention to the majesty of light as he portrays his abode and the mementos that adorn it. Hearkening back to his Lost & Found series from 2017—wherein Grauer also documents everyday objects—he now contextualizes his personal artifacts in space and time. At once, he conveys his meditations on queerness, mortality, and the omnipresence of his mother, Janice, who passed away early in 2023 following her battle with Alzheimer’s.

Although Grauer is a medical illustrator by training and a portrait artist by tendency, his most recent works forego the human figure in lieu of still lifes and landscapes. While adjusting to life in lockdown, he began this transition by musing on the passage of time in his Gridded Nature series. Coniferous Sky and Forsythia Blooming, both painted in 2021, comprise squares rendered during various seasons which, when assembled, constitute a landscape in degrees of birth, maturity, and degeneration. Grauer maintains his fixation on temporality in A QU(i)E(t)ER Interior. “I’ve always had an interest in things like memento mori, in anatomy, in light,” he reflects. Whereas he communicates this motif formally in his Gridded Nature paintings, he now relays it allegorically—notice not only the clocks but unfurling smoke, wilting gerbera daisies, and lengthening shadows whose gestures intimate the inevitable.

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