Louise B. Hansen (1927-2014), Ghost Town, c.1950, oil on masonite, 26 x 24 inches. Brigham Young University Museum of Art.
Eerie and evocative, Louise Hansen’s
Ghost Town functions as both a modernist exploration of geometric form and a romantic view of the overlooked and forgotten spaces left behind in the wake of America’s successes and failures. The asymmetrical and angular shapes layer on top of one another, as though the painting was composed from paper cutouts or irregular scraps of discarded wood from a carpenter’s scrap pile. This irregularity is appropriate for a painting of a discarded place, a town transitioning from history into mystery and myth.