Audrey Tulimiero Welch “Songlines” Exhibition

Back to Exhibitions Nancy Toomey Fine Art

Audrey Tulimiero Welch “Songlines” Exhibition

May 6 — Jul 2, 2022

Check gallery website for hours and additional info

Audrey Tulimiero Welch, Chickadee, 2022
Acrylic on canvas, 59 x 51 inches

May 6 to July 2, 2022

1275 Minnesota Street, San Francisco

Nancy Toomey Fine Art is pleased to announce an exhibition of works by Audrey Tulimiero Welch titled Songlines, on view from May 6 to July 2, 2022. The gallery is located inside San Francisco’s Minnesota Street Project, 1275 Minnesota Street. Gallery hours are Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, 12pm to 4pm, and by appointment–please contact or 415-307-9038. Read More »

The public is invited to meet artist Audrey Tulimiero Welch at the gallery on Saturday, June 4, from 4pm to 6pm.

Audrey Tulimiero Welch, Cosmic Dance, 2021
Acrylic, plaster, ink on canvas, 48 x 96 inches (diptych)

Artist Audrey Tulimiero Welch had the opportunity to live in Western Australia with her family from 2011 to 2016. It was during those five years that she first learned about the labyrinth of invisible pathways which meander all over the country and are known to the Indigenous people there as “songlines.” During a walkabout–a ritual journey–the name of every plant, rock, and waterhole is sung out. As art critic Richard Speer says, in his essay on Welch’s exhibition, with their songlines they have for millennia “melded music, navigation, and cosmology, singing the very world into being.” Even more interesting to Welch, and relevant to her art practice, is the implication that a songline is both a map and wayfinder. For the Indigenous Australians, according to travel writer Bruce Chatwin, land is not hemmed in by frontiers but rather is conceived as “an interlocking network of lines or way through; all their words for ‘country’ are the same as their words for ‘line.’”

Audrey Tulimiero Welch, This morning she told him
she still wanted to gaze into his green eyes, 2022
Acrylic on canvas, 48 x 48 inches

As Welch’s fascination with songlines grew, it affirmed and enriched her instinctual use of line as a crucial construct in her own work. The paintings can be read as her own metaphoric maps that contain, in their embedded layers, personal stories and lived relationships of her own daily life. They express the human impulse throughout history to seek home. The work uses line and gesture to lead the viewer to locations that are both familiar and unknown. Welch, in her paintings, also continues exploring her long-standing visual curiosity around diagrams and structures found in multiple sources including maps, the branch systems of trees, street signage, and nautical flags. Significantly, the new work is her attempt to push through the certainty of the diagram and mapped lines, and move into the more uncharted and improvisational. As a counterbalance to the weight and heaviness of our current times, Welch has chosen to work with a palette that speaks to a certain lightness and buoyancy.


Audrey Tulimiero Welch, Open the door
and fly on your clay feet, 2021
Acrylic on canvas, 48 x 48 inches

Welch layers paint, gestural drawings, taped lines, and plaster on canvas and then subsequently cuts away and excavates these materials. This back and forth process creates a cadence, rhythmically similar to walking a trek in search of refuge. Line in her work performs acts as a wayfinder and roadway, charting pathways for the viewer to enter pictorial space. The plaster serves as a skin that overlays and conceals underlying brush marks. At the end of her process comes the thrill of digging through the plaster, tape, and paint. Ultimately, the painting’s surface conveys a sense of dispersion and displacement, of losing and finding one’s way across unknown territories.

Audrey Tulimiero Welch, Songlines 6 (left)
Songlines 5 (right), 2022
Acrylic and flashe on panel
10 x 10 inches (each)

“The best work arises when I can step aside and allow the unexpected guest to arrive at my door,” says Welch. “That is one reason why I am attracted to abstraction. As a painter, I embrace this duality: seeking certainty and clarity, yet simultaneously welcoming improvisation. And related to improvisation is the concept of song. By singing the world into existence the Indigenous Australians are poets, a walkabout was a type of ritual journey. In my Songlines exhibition, I respond to and explore these rich themes with paint, line, and color.”

Audrey Tulimiero Welch

Currently based in Tacoma, Washington, Audrey Tulimiero Welch earned her BFA from the University of Delaware and MFA from the Art Institute of Boston at Lesley University. Welch’s work has been exhibited throughout the United States, Bangkok, Indonesia, Germany, Singapore, and Australia. Her paintings are included in numerous prestigious public and private collections, including GOOGLE, Ronald Mc Donald House, Perth, Western Australia, Hyatt Regency, Oman, Four Seasons Hotel, MGM, Saks Fifth Avenue. She has had museum exhibitions at Tacoma Art Museum, Frauen Museum, Bonn, Germany, Bade Museum, Berkeley, California, Coos Bay Art Museum, Oregon, and the Museo Italo Americano in San Francisco. Her works has been published in Fine Art Magazine, Architectural Digest, New American Paintings, San Francisco Chronicle, Fremantle Gazette, and SFMOMA Art News. Welch is represented by Russo Lee Gallery in Portland, Robischon Gallery in Denver, and Nancy Toomey Fine Art in San Francisco. Read More »

Audrey Tulimiero Welch, "Chickadee," 2022, acrylic and flashe on canvas, 59 x 51 inches