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Capturing abstraction in nature, both physical and atmospheric, is the essence of my work. I search for moments when the natural world appears changed, distilled down to color, form and light. I invite the viewer to experience the same sense of discovery.
Every day Barbara looks forward to creating art that will convey the same sense of beauty to the viewer that inspired the artist. She approaches her canvas with a concept and allows her mind, body and the inspiration found in her faith in God to bring the concept to fruition. Barbara's art may include energetic brushwork, palette knife work, soft passages of blended paint or a heavy build-up of paint. She strives for just enough variety without too much unity so as to capture the viewer’s attention.
In my current work I am involved with various gestural forms along with a variety of abstract language. I am also using the elements and energy of the landscape in some of the paintings which seems to enter into the work in an intuitive way. I live on a farm in Northern California with various livestock and beautiful surroundings. Breaking up the space differently in the current paintings than in previous works has created greater energy as well as interest for me with a new type of sensibility evolving with more emphasis on simpler more limited forms.
My paintings are meditative studies done with rich color and bold graphic compositions-I often incorporate circles, grids, and stripes. The universality and appeal of this symbology pulls the viewer in and holds them there to explore the subtle details. I try to create work that both captivates and calms. I work with abstractions because I want to put forth something universal that can be open to interpretations that are unique to each individual and can continue to evolve over time.
In my painting, I aim to create a visual grammar that all people and languages can understand. Paintings should resonate with a quick intuitive understanding and bring joy to the viewer, and this can happen when both the physical and spiritual worlds are given a more equal emphasis. I paint with striped diagonal or circular bands of color which forces illusionistic space out of my painting. I want the flatness of the painting, color and geometric shapes to be the subject rather than to create false illusions of things like representational art does when it draws from nature or fabricated worlds. Initially, I spend a great deal of time drawing to come up with a design that is stable and fixed, then use color quite freely and randomly and call my working process "ordered chaos". Music plays an essential part of my painting process. Music, like painting, reaches within to react directly upon the emotions. Color vibrates for me on the canvas just like music does in my ears. When I paint, I cannot distinguish between what I hear and what I see, it's like a blending of the senses.
As an artist, I find difficult to answer: is it I who defines painting or is it painting that defines me... Either way, it is both a transpersonal and a narcissistic relationship. The process of painting creates a state of Liminality, which leads to the discovery of my own essence. It is like writing a fable, one without words and one that is rather suggestive in nature. In that progression, I forget all that I know, for originality can only be achieved by reaching into my infinite possibilities. The abstract mechanics of art are same as making music, where the musician by use of an instrument transcends the process of playing; a painter transcends the limitation of medium, thus creating work that can produce an emotional response. And when that happens, art completes life, bringing to focus what nature cannot bring to finish.