Two artists that I have been obsessed with lately are Claire Sherman and Brendan Monroe. Both painters intrigue me in their fluid approach to landscape.
Sherman is interested in the sublime, and draws inspiration from the writings of Edmund Burke, Immanuel Kant, and Jean-Francois Lyotard, which discussed the sublime and the beauty of the natural world. Her main body of work consists of landscapes painted with oil on canvas. “Boulders” and “Swamp II” are two of my favorites:
“Boulders” | Claire Sherman
“Swamp II” | Claire Sherman
Sherman’s work has directly influenced my most recent painting, which is a landscape based off of a picture I took at Farm Sanctuary this summer (will post documentation soon!). Farm Sanctuary is a place where rescued factory farm animals live out their lives in peace. During a meeting with one of my professors today, we discussed which mediums (to mix with oil paint) would best create an effect similar to that of Sherman’s. I am going to look into some sort of an Impasto medium for oil paint. My professor also pointed out that Sherman most likely uses sedimentary colors, which are colors that have larger particles which can become suspended in a medium. Some of these colors include Burnt Sienna, Burnt Umber, Raw Sienna, Raw Umber, Yellow Ochre, Gold Ochre, Indian Red, Venetian Red, Asphaltum, Van Dyke Brown, Transparent Earth Orange, Transparent Earth Red, and Transparent Earth Yellow.
Brendan Monroe is an artist that I have only recently discovered. On his website, he explains, “My interpretations of the world are mostly rooted in science then executed through painting and sculpting. These are the best ways for me to communicate, but I always enjoy making other things as well.” In other sources, I’ve read that he deals with consciousness. His paintings are insanely beautiful and I cannot wait to study more of his work.
“Stuck” | Brendan Monroe
“Divide” | Brendan Monroe
Viewing Wolgang Laib’s piece, “Pollen from Hazelnut” from above. MOMA. March 8, 2013
While visiting New York City with my fine art class this past weekend, I got the opportunity to see Wolfgang Laib’s piece, “Pollen from Hazelnut” at the MOMA. Although my work is nothing like his in appearance, we share interests in the natural and spiritual:
“Informed by the purity and simplicity of Eastern philosophies, he employs natural materials, most notably milk, pollen, beeswax, rice and marble. His works are more complex than being just about nature and the natural world. They involve ritual, repetition, process, and a demand for contemplation.”
Learn more about his process:
This is a page from “Be Here Now” by Ram Dass; a book that has inspired much of my artwork. View the full PDF here: http://www.scribd.com/doc/6531720/Ram-Dassbe-Here-Now
Last Friday I attended the Carl Solway Gallery opening featuring works by John Torreano, Hadley Holiday and Dyann Landry. Of all the works I viewed that night, the most inspiring were from Holiday’s, One With the Sun series. These paintings consisted of psychedelic and pastel shades in mandala-like patterns. My favorites included “Sky Vault” and “Blissed-Out.” I also enjoyed Landry’s Mandalas in the series Blue Decline; installations made from plastic water bottles and light projected as shadows onto the wall.
After seeing the show, I realized that the mandala theme has been appearing in my life a lot recently; it feels like a sign that I need to explore them. At the end of last year, I tapped into the mandala theme a little bit by creating a collage painting using the pages of the book, “Be Here Now” by Ram Dass. I chose this book in particular because it centers around Buddhist concepts that I am interested in. By layering the pages into the shape of a lotus flower, I was able to reveal certain words from the pages. Since that painting, I have been experimenting with other mediums and ideas surrounding Buddhism/food/abstraction. At this point I feel like I need to unify these ideas, and that mandalas might be the way to do so do.
Mixed media on canvas, 24″ X 36″