Bridget Mullen, "Double Blind," 2022; Flashe on canvas; 8 x 10 in; all artwork photos by Julia Gillard

Bridget Mullen

New York
Chiaro Award, 2022

Artist Statement

My paintings display themes of quitting as a return to self, the relationship of the individual to their community, the unknowability of our interior, and trust. I use repetition like propaganda to normalize strangeness, imply motion, explore the shadow self, and create an army. Symmetry hypnotizes and mirrors the viewer peering in as the painting peers back. My process is improvisational. I don’t pre-sketch; I make abstract paintings that I repurpose as figurative. Prioritizing formal concerns over narrative intentions and coupling irrational and referential forms allows me to make a painting that looks like, for example, sexy dog-headed twins in red jumpsuits that lost their boots while in a mirrored fun house. The necessity of this image is looped into the necessity of my process. By holding space for ambiguity, rumination, invention, and play, my paintings ask to be trusted despite their wildness, despite appearing symbolic yet being too slippery for narrative to attach.


While at Headlands

While at Headlands I will be working on paintings in progress for my upcoming 2023 solo show at Shulamit Nazarian in Los Angeles. I’m hoping a departure from the density of New York City for the extended ocean sightline will crack open my typically dense, frenetic paintings and encourage a greater sense of spatial depth.