Ginny Coombs, whose work is being featured at the Lamplight Gallery in Bountiful now through the end of the month, pulls the subjects of art strictly from the real world. Her style, however, seems almost to be the painting equivalent of magical realism, transforms the natural world into something that seems straight out of a fairy tale.
This is most obvious in her mountain scenes, where shimmering midnight skies (“Mt. Timpanogos”) and marshmallow mounds (“Morning on the Mountain” ) turn stone and dirt into something wondrous.
Her collection of horse paintings come from the secret dream of a child’s heart, one who reads Greek myths and imagines horses emerging from the white waves of the ocean (“White Stallions”) or simply wished to find the one who would be the true friend they’ve always longed for (“Wish for a Horse.”)
Even Coombs’ photography, which she displays less often than her other art, has an element of the magical in it. In “Bryce in Morning,” Southern Utah’s red rock formations become natural temples, a connection she highlights specifically with the towers of stone that seem to stand watch over the full moon in “Celestial Guardians.”
In “Blue Mountains,” the natural world is flattened to great swaths of pure color, turning the familiar into something fantastical and strange.
When you’re looking at the world through an artist’s eyes, everything has that potential.