Housekeeping features a new body fo work that continues Toebbe’s personal and formal exploration of space. As the mother of two young children, Toebbe has found herself spending an increasing amount of time engaging in the activity of housecleaning. In the exhibited paintings, she conceptually relates the act of cleaning to that of creating a painting; with both activities her ultimage goal is to establish order. Two large cut paper pieces relate to Toebbe’s grappling with her husband’s ex-wife; in this way, they represent a sort of emotional housecleaning.
There is a significant tension in Toebbe’s work that dreives from the collision of her faux-naive pictorial style and the formal sophistication of her compositions. Each painting comes together from myriad
adjustments in the application of paint and tonality, and the artist’s cut paper pieces are constructed from hundreds of indivudually cut and colored shards of paper. Toebbe labors over her work intensely, just as she does in her role as a mother.
“I am relating painting to cleaning a house,” Toebbe says of her work. “I straighten up a painting like my house to get it in order and playing with using different types of paint to represent clean and dirty, dull versus bright color. For these ideas I used my parents dining room, which I spent cleaning as a kid – I have such vivid memories of the goofy colors.”