I am honored to have a show at the University of Portland this Fall and I wanted to make a thoughtful artist statement for the beautiful post card they will send out to at least 500 people, people who think, a lot. That’s what you do in college right? I tried it but beer was much more fun. 🙂
After a whole bunch of hilarious revisions, I have finally come up with something that I may be able to use, but it’s not funny anymore. So, here, on the blog, I will decode it so it not only makes more sense, but also captures the true essence of what I was trying to say.
I will translate each paragraph into one sentence for your pleasure. Enjoy!
Gia Whitlock Artist Statement
Painting, for me, is like putting together a puzzle with no edges and no image on the box. As I glue bits of decorative paper to the surface, I outline and enhance them with bright colors of acrylic paint, sometimes losing the collage altogether. Whether or not the paper remains visible, the texture helps to shape the next layers of paint and paper. I have come to crave these textures in my finished pieces.
Translation: I have NO IDEA what I am doing, or why I am doing it, most of the time.
What begins as a random collection of unmixed colors, shapes, textures, and patterns, ultimately becomes a unified whole that combines imagination and reality. Representational forms that are blended with nonrepresentational forms make up the entirety of these mosaic-like paintings. Outlines around the shapes single the pieces out while simultaneously connecting them to each other.
Translation: I struggle to make sense of the stuff I paint so I draw lines around it and use large words to justify myself.
What often arises from this intuitive process is a variety of natural and spiritual themes. Some of the pieces are abstract scenes, reminiscent of the forest and the mystical creatures that may or may not live there. Other pieces focus on animal forms made of fruits and other organic shapes. A search through the intense blocks of color, balanced by neutral areas, may yield a solitary inhabitant of nature, or a dream world composed of fictional characters amidst elements of the earthly landscape.
Translation: When you look at these paintings, you may say to yourself, “There’s an apple over here, a bird that swallowed a whole bunch of stuff next to a little person with wings over there, and what the hell is that shape in the middle? “
Thanks for reading all the way to the end. I hope this helps you better understand the enigma that is an artist statement. 🙂