This week I have been looking at a couple of artists who have very different approaches to surface treatment. The first is Hannah Cole who studied at Yale and Boston University, and shows internationally. Cole says when she moved to New York she started walking everywhere and began to notice all of the patterns that people just rush past every day. She works to recreate these patterns and textures in hopes that it will connect to a larger audience and "it brings that feeling of beauty or magic to something someone knows already, but has never thought of as special.”
Cole paints everyday surfaces with painstaking detail, trying to capture the textures and patterns that inspire her. She says that part of this is meditative, and part is her Yankee determination. She has also transitioned from oil to acrylic since having her first child which I find interesting since I made the same transition many years ago. She says that since she paints in so many layers acrylic actually makes more sense for her as an artist. While I feel there are many advantage and disadvantages to both media, I feel acrylic best meets my needs at present as well.
The other artist that a professor of mine suggested I look at this week is Sara Sizer. Quite the opposite of Cole's layering paint to create her work, Sizer uses bleach to remove color from the fabric used in her work.
Using different colored fabrics made of a variety of material, Sizer has found that the bleach responds differently with each, lending itself to the creation of a variety of colors and textured patterns. Through experimentation Sizer has also refined the process of bleaching the fabric so she can create very large areas of color as well as very refined detailed areas. The result are very simplified abstract paintings that have a glow to them. Some of her work seems to hone in on a subject that the viewer can almost make out, others simply make interesting patterns. Either way it is enough to intrigue the viewer to draw closer and investigate. I hope to do just that this summer. Sizer shows her work in Berlin, Germany where I will be participating in a study abroad program this summer, so I hope to see her work first hand.
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Working on my MFA in Studio Art at Georgia Southern has taught me the importance of understanding not only what I am doing as an artist, but also what other artists are doing, and how that can impact my artwork.