Inspirations...

This week has had quite a few!

This piece of wood has been sitting in my studio for a while; it finally got some form this week as I remembered  Niki De Saint Phalle.  Also a throwback to art school, which brings me to my next inspiration this week (what can I say, I have been drinking from the fountains of knowledge),  Nell Painter’s Old in Art School!

This piece of wood has been sitting in my studio for a while; it finally got some form this week as I remembered Niki De Saint Phalle. Also a throwback to art school, which brings me to my next inspiration this week (what can I say, I have been drinking from the fountains of knowledge), Nell Painter’s Old in Art School!

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inspiration #1

Old in Art School by Nell Painter

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I heard Nell Painter before I read her on one of my favorite sources for all things art, Tyler Green’s “The Modern Art Notes Podcast.” I loved the conversation and was immensely curious about her art school experience, which she documents in the book. Old in Art School didn’t disappoint! I heard echoes of my own experience as an undergraduate, of being “old in art school.” especially, these words:

I wanted to create images, to make art that can express my own mixed up character, to forge a truer me than one confined by exciting categories of sex-race and widely circulated as necessarily true (14).

Inspired by this reading, I decided to do my own version of 100 paintings. The drawing above is one of those. The rest are here, a mix of charcoal, pencil, transfers and ink. More on this work in the next few posts.

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Trees

A constant subject

Recently, I read a post on artist Judy Paul’s blog talking about trees as a subject matter, and got inspired to go down memory lane and visit the influence and presence of trees in my own work. My first exhibit was called Trees (I mean how creative can you get?) featuring, amongst other pieces, a set of three intaglio prints, named Inaudible.. See more in portfolio

Inaudible IV

I made a few more of these, reminiscent of fall on the University of Washington campus and my walk to class in the mornings. The tree streak ended with an Ode to one of my favorite songs, The Trees by Canadian Band Rush, Here it is:

An Ode,  Intaglio, Aquatint, Collage.

An Ode, Intaglio, Aquatint, Collage.

Influences

Mondrian, of course, tops my list! Art historian Yve-Alain Bois, in his essay, “The Iconoclast,” suggests that Mondrian embraced a tenet of postimpressionism as articulated by “Maurice Denis: all forms of illusion in painting must be resisted, and the domain of art and nature must not be confused” (55). Further in his essay, citing Mondrian’s philosophical evolution, Bois points us to the artist’s thoughts in “De Nieuwe Beelding:”

Being is manifested or known only by its opposite. This implies that the visible, the natural concrete, is not known through visible nature, but through its opposite. For modern consciousness, this means that visible reality can be expressed only by abstract-real plastic". (Bois, 55)

Thats a lot to think about, I know, but also feel like it boils down to what Edel Atman says, “all art is abstract.” Listen to her wonderful talks here and here.

Back to my own journey with trees, I had to attempt Mondrian’s gorgeous Red Tree and once I started painting with acrylics, I made this:

Yes, I do not have black (and can’t compare to the painting above)! I am not there yet—It’s a strong statement, don’t you know!  Channeling Cèzanne below, and the Fauves.

Yes, I do not have black (and can’t compare to the painting above)! I am not there yet—It’s a strong statement, don’t you know!

Channeling Cèzanne below, and the Fauves.

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Chartreuse

20”X16”

Acrylic on Canvas

Evening Walk    36”X24”    Acrylic on Canvas

Evening Walk

36”X24”

Acrylic on Canvas

This is a work in progress!   Available Light   18”X24”  Acrylic on board

This is a work in progress!

Available Light

18”X24”

Acrylic on board