Madeleine Bialke - New Now & Design Hong Kong Sunday, November 26, 2023 | Phillips
  • “Trees are both significant and other; dream-like apparitions that dot the landscape and loom overhead … Trees are incredibly numerous in our lives, blanketing hills and lining streets. They are quieter conversationalists than other creatures.”
    — Madeleine Bialke

    Madeleine Bialke's works reflect a unique blend of natural scenery with a narrative or emotional overlay, notably exploring themes of post-apocalyptic landscapes and the decline of forests over the last century. Most of her pieces are devoid of humans. Her paintings subtly suggest that nature itself, particularly trees, feels the same ailments and challenges as humans, making them central and luminescent subjects in her work. Bialke's artistry carries influences from Edward Hopper, Grant Wood, and the Group of Seven, but with a modern twist that highlights nature's artificial or damaged state due to human interference.

    Lawren S. Harris, Northern Lake, 1923
    Artwork: © Estate of Lawren S. Harris

    Mariners features an intriguing composition with a rich palette of colours. The backdrop is dominated by a warm gradient, transitioning from a bright orange at the bottom to a dusty, brownish hue at the top, reminiscent of a sunset. In the foreground, there are abstract representations of trees or organic forms. These forms have long, slender trunks that support spiralling, ribbon-like branches or leaves, coloured in a muted shade, contrasting with the background. The spiral branches ascend in an almost rhythmic pattern. Beneath these tall forms, there are cloud-like purple structures with white tendrils or branches protruding from them, further adding to the painting's dreamlike quality. 

    The combination of colours and shapes brings forth a sense of nature's mystique and perhaps a hint of its anthropomorphic qualities. The distant view of a mountain range and a sea bathed in burnt orange evokes feelings of a vast seascape. Mariners perhaps allude to sailors, so this painting could potentially signify their perspective or experience—navigating and venturing through a mesmerizing, otherworldly landscape.

    Madeleine Bialke is a contemporary artist born in 1991 in Elmira, New York, and currently resides and works in London, UK. Bialke earned a Master of Fine Arts degree from Boston University in 2016 and a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Plattsburgh State in 2013. Her artistic journey has seen her work exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions worldwide in 2023 which include Leaves of Grass at Newchild Gallery at KIAF Seoul, Korea, Giants in the Dusk at Huxley-Parlour Gallery, London, UK, and Death Motel at Newchild Gallery, Antwerp, Belgium. Mariners marks the artist’s auction debut showcasing her distinct style and vision.

    • Provenance

      Huxley-Parlour Gallery, London
      Acquired from the above by the present owner



signed, titled and dated '"Mariners" 2021 Madeleine Bialke' on the reverse
oil on canvas
56.2 x 45.8 cm. (22 1/8 x 18 in.)
Painted in 2021.

Full Cataloguing

HK$30,000 - 50,000 

Sold for HK$48,260

Contact Specialist

Angela Tian
Associate Specialist, Head of New Now & Design Sale
20th Century & Contemporary Art, Hong Kong
+852 2318 2058

New Now & Design

Hong Kong Auction 26 November 2023