LandEscape Art Review, Special Edition

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LandEscape Contemporary

A r t

R e v i e w

Anniversary Edition

ART

KATHLEEN FRANK JEFF CORWIN ALEXANDRE DANG COLETTE HOSMER WARWICK SAMUEL SUZANNE GIBBS BRIAN ORD LAURA AHOLA-YOUNG DANA TAYLOR Cover: a work by


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SUMMARY

CONTEMPORARY ART REVIEW

C o n t e m p o r a r y

A r t

R e v i e w

Jeff Corwin

Kathleen Frank

Colette Hosmer

Alexandre Dang

Dana Taylor

Julia Hadrich

USA

USA

USA

Belgium

Israel / United Kingdom

USA

I think there’s an assumption that a photographer begins their artistic work first and then if there is a commercial career, it comes afterward. With me, it was completely the opposite. I shot for 40 years in advertising, developing a way of seeing that worked for my clients and made me happy at the same time. It wasn’t until 15 years ago that I started photographing landscapes in the eastern part of Washington State. Even this interest came about because of an assignment for a bank that took me from Seattle to Walla Walla. It was then that I fell in love with that part of the world.

Having been an art teacher, woodcarver and a printmaker in my formative art years, I emerged as a painter, awash in color and searching for pattern. While seeking brilliance in color is a worthy goal, pattern in nature is primal - the need to find a glimmer of logic in a vastly complicated, confusing and tumbled landscape. The goal is lofty, but when the quest is conducted with paint and brush, it is a joyously daunting adventure.Color and pattern are everywhere, but the seeing and the interpretation of them are different for each of us. I look for the brilliance and the gaiety of life around me.

Contemporary naturalist who is celebrated internationally for her outdoor sculptures and installation work with organic materials.

Alexandre Dang comes originally from a scientific background (Engineer of the École Polytechnique (Paris) and of the École Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées (Paris)). Convinced of the need to raise awareness of the potential of environmental friendly technologies and sustainable development, he developed his artistic creation often incorporating solar energy as source into his kinetic art works. Through his work, he contributes educating the general public on contemporary themes which represent a major challenge for the future. The pressing need to address this issue is the driving force of Alexandre Dang’s artistic commitment, where he combines scientific approach, environmental concern and humanism.

I was born and raised in Tel Aviv, which is a vibrant, colourful, hectic and exciting city. I was lucky enough to have an exceptional upbringing, which was based on free thinking, unconditional love and acceptance of self and others. I was constantly exposed to a variety of art forms and was surrounded by great minds, extraordinary talents, passionate and exceptional individuals who spoke their minds freely, and confidently exposed their souls, so from a very young age I understood and appreciated the importance and power of creativity, diversity, critical thinking, self- reflecting, freedom of expression etc... and so I chose to walk in the same path, while skipping and balancing both intellectual and emotional aspects.

Julia Hadrich is an aspiring photographer living in Peoria, AZ. Majoring in photography and a minor in photo-editing, she received an Associate in Arts from Rio Salado College. From camera obscura to the immensely challenging world of digital, Julia has been emerged herself in the history of photography. Not only does Julia continue to learn different techniques, she challenges her photography skill by entering online photography sites such as; Viewbug but also, in local art competitions. In February 2012, during the Arizona Centennial, her photographs were displayed at the Phoenix Art Museum.

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Born in 1946, Hosmer grew up in a small town in rural North Dakota. She studied art at the University of North Dakota and at Linn Benton College. Hosmer worked as the director of Shidoni Gallery in Santa Fe, New Mexico before beginning a professional career as an artist at the age of 44. Since then Hosmer’s work has been exhibited in prestigious museums throughout the world.


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Alexandre Dang

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lives and works in Bruxelles, Belgium

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Jeff Corwin lives and works in Tynemouth, Northumbria, UK

Colette Hosmer

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lives and works in Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

Kathleen Frank

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lives and works in Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

Warwick Samuel

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lives and works in the United Kingdom

Margarida Naves Warwick Samuel

Margarida Naves

USA

United Kingdom

Portugal

My work centers on my attempt to pay attention to signage in the natural world.Through mark making, I am attempting to capture singular instances of temporary phenomenon, consciously and unconsciously transcribing patterns. I research and aesthetically study geography, plant physiology, mining and environmental issues in an attempt to mimic the structures and represent science through meticulous and labored marks. I have named my most recent collection of paintings Prodromes in relation to an internal, structural and organizational system of signage and warnings. Through paint, I am attempting to capture these instances of signs as symptoms: fleeting, a speck, a circumstance, a neural, biological, philosophical, sensory occasion.

The involvement of the viewer in the painted image seems to have always existed. From the age of 15unusually young with hindsight – I have painted outdoors, plein air. Over the years the lessons all artists learn the hard way have been honed into a process involving large scale drawings, (to prevent being drawn into detail) small scale water colour studies and later, when more understanding is needed, a plein air oil painting. In the studio all this information of composition, tone and colour are slowly merged into a painting which takes on its own life and direction.

Margarida Naves, was born in Lisbon, Portugal, and has graduated in Industrial Design, having later completed a Master's Degree in Interior Design, and a degree in Photography. This artistic medium was an old passion, and she decided to devote herself to the development of her personal writing, where her work portrays the daily landscapes with a poetic approach, close to the oneiric universe. Her practice creates a dialogue where the real and the imaginary are combined, in an abstract or accurate form, giving place to a fictional nature and narrative.

Laura Ahola-Young

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lives and works in Lisbon, Portugal

Suzanne Gibbs

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lives and works in California and in England

Kayla Hunnicutt

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lives and works in Portland, Oregon, USA

Julia Hadrich

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lives and works in Peoria, Arizona, USA

Special thanks to Haylee Lenkey, Martin Gantman , Krzysztof Kaczmar, Joshua White, Nicolas Vionnet, Genevieve Favre Petroff, Sandra Hunter, MyLoan Dinh, John Moran, Marya Vyrra, Gemma Pepper, Michael Nelson, Hannah Hiaseen and Scarlett Bowman, Yelena York Tonoyan, Miya Ando, Martin Gantman , Krzysztof Kaczmar and Robyn Ellenbogen.

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LandEscape meets

Alexandre Dang Lives and works in Brussels, Belgium Alexandre Dang comes originally from a scientific background (Engineer of the École Polytechnique (Paris) and of the École Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées (Paris)). Convinced of the need to raise awareness of the potential of environmental friendly technologies (eco-technologies) and sustainable development, he developed his artistic creation often incorporating solar energy as source into his kinetic art works. Through his work, he contributes educating the general public on contemporary themes which represent a major challenge for the future. Though the sun provides 10,000 times more energy to the earth than humans need, more than 1.3 billion people still do not have access to electricity. The pressing need to address this issue is the driving force of Alexandre Dang’s artistic commitment, where he combines scientific approach, environmental concern and humanism. Alexandre Dang has developed a pedagogic aspect to his sustainable art, using it to educate young people about the potential of eco-friendly technologies with a focus on renewable energy. He has co-founded Solar Solidarity International (a non-profit international association) to raise awareness on the potential of renewable sources of energy and to support solar electrification of schools in developing countries. The “Dancing Solar Flowers” have become an iconic work of the commitment of the artist. They have toured around the world: USA, China, Singapore, Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, Russia, Mexico, Brazil, Lebanon, Morocco, Belgium, The Netherlands, Luxembourg, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Denmark, Poland, Hungary, Slovenia, Estonia, and Romania… His works have been featured in sites including the Museo de Arte Moderno de Bogotá (MAMBO) (Colombia), the Shifang Cultural Center in Chongqing (China), the Cultural Center Correios in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), the Heritage Space Cultural Center in Hanoi (Vietnam), the Chengdu A4 Art Museum in Chengdu (China), the Elektrownia Cultural Center in Radom (Poland), the Villa Méditerranée in Marseille (France), the Museum of Natural History in Geneva (Switzerland), the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) in Xi’An (China), the Nian Dai Mei Shu Guan (Epoch Art Museum) in Wenzhou (China), the Art Tower Mito Cultural Center in Mito (Japan), the National Museum of Singapore (Singapore), the Ca’ Foscari Università in Venice (Italy), the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) in Taipei (Taiwan), the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Tournai (Belgium), the Belgian and European Pavilion of World Expo Shanghai 2010, the Palais des Beaux Arts (Bozar – Center for fine Arts) in Brussels, the Singapore Art Museum (SAM), the Royal Greenhouses of Laeken (Brussels), the Royal Palace of Brussels, the European Commission (Brussels), the European Parliament (Brussels, Luxembourg, Strasbourg), etc.

An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Melissa C. Hilborn, curator

pleased to discover the development of your

landescape@europe.com

we have selected for this special edition of

Hello Alexandre, and welcome back to LandEscape. We already got the chance to introduce our readers to your artworks in a previous edition and we are now particularly

LandEscape and that our reader can view at

artistic production. The new body of works that

http://alexandredang.com has captured our attention for the way you are developing a more and more distinct visual identity. How does your



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practice has evolved over these two years and in what direction are you currently addressing your artistic research?

interest in my recent works. Over the past two

Alexandre Dang: Hello and thank you for your

expression. For instance, through “Graphic

years, I have been developing new types of works hence also expanding my ways of


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Dances�, I explore solar energy through

the body comes exclusively from solar energy.

various angles, in particular how the human

More precisely, the plants grow thanks to

body receives its energy to live and move.

photosynthesis which is a conversion of solar

Indeed, when we think about it, the energy of

energy. Hence, all vegetables and the fruits




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grow thanks to the energy coming from the sun. Then some animals eat the vegetables and the fruits... like the cows which eat grass and produce milk. The human, at the end of the food chain, eat vegetables, fruits, animal products (like milk, eggs…) and meat. Hence we can see, that originally, all the food is

produced exclusively by the conversion of solar energy thanks to the photosynthesis and the food chain. So “Graphic Dances” involving the movement of the body of the Dancers is an expression of solar energy. I have developed other types of artworkswhere the solar energy is a key


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element like the “Sun’s Path” and the “Solar

that provides your artworks with such unique

Paintings and Drawings”. Each time, I try and

tactile feature. New York City based artist Lydia

explore the potential of solar energy and sun

Dona once stated that in order to make art

in a poetic way.

today one has to reevaluate the conceptual language behind the mechanism of art making

Your art practice is marked out with such

itself: do you create your works gesturally,

unconventional and multidisciplinary approach,

instinctively? Or do you methodically transpose




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geometric schemes? In particular, how important was for the creation of your recent Graphic Dance series the physical aspect of your creative process?

Alexandre Dang: Relating to the “Dancing Solar Flowers”, it is obvious that there is a whole phase where I draw sketches and blueprints and work on the technology aspects like electronics and mechanics. There is an enormous preparatory workload on these works notably also on the calculation of the movement. With the Graphic Dances, two aspects are essential: on the one hand, the definition of a clear composition and a working framework and, on the other hand, spontaneity in the realization. During the creation process, both aspects are very most important: enabling spontaneity of the choreography to evolve in a in a well-defined and set space, context and structure. The physical aspect of the Graphic Dances results from the different movements performed by the dancers who become in a certain way “animated paint brushes”. The body of works that we have selected for this special edition of LandEscape and that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article has at once captured our attention of your works is the way they challenge the spectators' perceptual parameters, inviting them to look inside of what appear them to be seen, rather than its surface, providing them with freedom to realize their own, personal perception. Austrian Art historian Ernst Gombrich once remarked the importance of providing a particular space for the viewers to project onto, so that they can actively participate


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in the creation of the illusion: how important is for you to trigger the viewers' imagination in order to address them to elaborate personal interpretations? In particular, how open would you like your works to be understood?

Alexandre Dang: In my opinion, it is crucial to enable a viewer finding himself in front of a work to have full freedom for his imagination to be strongly triggered. One mission of an artist, in my opinion, it is to invite people to dream and potentially to be amazed by an art work. In addition, it is also important to be able to develop a reflection of what we perceive in order to try and understand it. I would like my works to be understood for their commitments, in particular to raise awareness on the various issues related to our contemporary world, the environment and also on the link that mankind maintains with its surrounding and in particular with the potential of solar energy. With such unique combination between sense of freedom and balance of composition, your Graphic Dance series feature bold colors and suggest sense of dynamics: how did you come about settling on your color palette? And how does your own psychological make-up determine the nuances of tones that you decide to include in your works in order to achieve such brilliant results?

Alexandre Dang: I leave my imagination free to imagine color combinations. I give some tries to combinations. Generally, these are more empirical and experienced choices, to try them out in order to have a certain harmony of colors. For your current body of works you used large canvass, that provide the viewers with such an




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immersive visual experience: how did the dimensions of your canvass affect your workflow and how important is for you to provide the viewers with such immersive visual experience?

Alexandre Dang: I use small and very large canvas for this project. This is an element of my freedom of creation.

Whatever the size of the work, the public can immerse in the dance. With that, the viewers become actors and no longer spectators. Above all, the choice of the size of the canvas refers directly to the freedom of creation. This freedom makes also the dance more fluid and more important. A crucial aspect of your artistic practice is the


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need to raise awareness of the potential of environmental friendly technologies (ecotechnologies) and sustainable development. Mexican artist Gabriel Orozco once stated, "the artist’s role differs depending on which part of the world you’re in. It depends on the political system you’re living under". Not to mention that almost everything, could be considered political, do you think that your work could be

considered political in a certain sense? Moreover, what could be in your opinion the role of artists in our contemporary age?

Alexandre Dang: My work highlights the potential of renewable energy and solar energy. Indeed, the Earth is facing a major contemporary environmental challenge and I want to raise awareness about it. It is also




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crucial for me to make things happen through my works: in this context, all copyrights of my works are fully devoted to the nonprofit international organization Solar Solidarity International. The aim of Solar Solidarity International is to raise awareness on the potential of renewable sources of energy and to support solar electrification projects in the developing world. Thanks to the activity of the association, projects could be supported in countries like Togo, Tanzania, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Kenya, Ecuador, Nepal, Democratic Republic of Congo, Guinea Bissau, Zimbabwe, Morocco, Mali, Ecuador and Haïti where some beautiful realisations were carried out such as the solar electrification of schools, equipments, infirmeries, medical centers, orphanages and hospitals in developing countries. More information is available on the website of Solar Solidarity International: www.solarsolidarity.org in particular in the section “projects supported”. We like the way your practice combines scientific method with such unique artistic sensitiveness: how does your scientific background fuel your artistic reasearch?

Alexandre Dang: My background in science makes my works integrate another sensitivity that further enhances the technique used. Indeed, Art and Science have a lot in common. They are interdependent. They are both based on empirical research, drawing, sketching... The approach is similar; we find the same concepts in both areas such as the circle, perspective and the theory of colors. Art and Science are two different points that I combine to enable me to enrich my thoughts by means of two different approaches.


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You are an established artist and over the years your artworks have been exhibited in several locations. Direct relationship with the audience in a physical is definetely the most important one, in order to snatch the spirit of a work of Art. However, as the move of Art from traditional gallery spaces, to street and especially to the online realm increases, how would in your opinion change the relationship with a globalised audience? In particular, how do you consider the role of emerging online technosphere — and platforms as Instagram — in creating new links between artists and worldwide audience?

Alexandre Dang: Now more than ever, the online platforms and social networks have a major and international role in the artistic field. These spaces give unlimited access to culture. In addition, on these different social networks such as Instagram, it is possible for people to exchange and share. I continue to discover these new forms of media and I am convinced that this helps to strengthen links with the public. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts again, Alexandre. How do you see your evolution as an artist over time? Are there any things that you do fundamentally different from when you started years ago?

Alexandre Dang: I strive to develop new works in relation to what I see, hear, feel and think. New projects are also to come as well as a search for beauty aiming to convey messages through aesthetics and poetry. I still have the same way of working and have this desire to get messages across for humanity. Thank you for these very interesting questions.


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LandEscape meets

Jeff Corwin I think there’s an assumption that a photographer begins their artistic work first and then if there is a commercial career, it comes afterward. With me, it was completely the opposite. I shot for 40 years in advertising, developing a way of seeing that worked for my clients and made me happy at the same time. It wasn’t until 15 years ago that I started photographing landscapes in the eastern part of Washington State. Even this interest came about because of an assignment for a bank that took me from Seattle to Walla Walla. It was then that I fell in love with that part of the world. The majority of eastern Washington is sparse, in direct contrast to the lushness of the western region which, while beautiful, never interested me photographically. The “Channeled Scabland” was created during the last ice age, a 1/2 mile high dam of ice that failed over and over, until ice and water raced through eastern Washington, stripping away soil and rock, carving the current landscape that I love to photograph so much. Enough geological history. I always felt that one definition of photography is simply a recognition of what personally resonates. For me, simplicity, graphic shapes, strong lines or shapes that repeat are what “do it for me.” In business, it just became second nature to walk into a situation I’d never seen and start to look for these elements. Many times they were found already existing, sometimes I needed to create them. The first time I drove from Seattle to the eastern part of the state, after crossing the Columbia River I began to recognize the things that were a trigger for me visually. A black asphalt road cutting for miles through harvested wheat. An empty, snowy field with a stream creating a curve to a single tree. Or a small barn, the roof barely visible above a barren hillside. I would get in the car and just drive empty roads for days, sometimes seeing another car, many times not. And very rarely seeing or talking to other people. This was a choice after years of photographing people for work; and besides, why force people into a landscape where they’re seldom seen? These images void of people are an accurate representation of being there. Then, after many years of shooting landscapes without any tools other than a camera, I began to do what I did primarily for work; artificially light subjects by bringing powerful strobes into the landscapes. Beginning in 2019, I began the experiment of working in color. I’m finding there are some similarities, but many differences as well. And this is fine, as I’ve always defined my job as “problem solving.” I’m ready for the challenge. The problem in this particular case was the issue of not liking my color landscapes. So I began to search for a solution of how to create a look that was illustrative of the landscape instead of literal representation of it. I want people to look at them and hesitate a moment and ask questions.

An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Melissa C. Hilborn, curator landescape@europe.com

Hello Jeff and welcome to LandEscape. Before starting to elaborate about your artistic production,

we would like to invite our readers to visit https://www.jeffcorwinfineart.com in order to get an idea about your multi-faceted artistic production. We would like to start this interview with a couple of questions about your background. You started your journey in photography when you were 15 and your career evolved, allowing you to work with some of



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the country's top graphic designers: are there any experiences that particularly influenced your evolution as a visual artist? And how has your approach to photography matured over the years and influenced your life? The primary experience that changed my career and life was when I met the vice president of the aerospace company, Northrop, now Northrop Grumman. Knowing that Northrop was famous for their use of black and white photography within their brand, I picked up the phone and called. When I was put through to his office, he miraculously picked up his own phone and granted me an interview. I was young and seemingly ill-prepared to sit in an office of a corporate headquarters like that. Sweaty and under-dressed, I showed my pathetic portfolio. One image in particular caught his eye. After a deadly silence, he offered me a three-day assignment to photograph the company’s engineers, who he felt were the backbone of Northrop. I was (I think) 27 and everything changed for me after that successful shoot. Since I was now able to show a portfolio with that kind of aerospace work, it led to shoots for Lockheed, Boeing, Raytheon, Loral Space Systems, Pratt-Whitney and RollsRoyce. That in turn led to shoots for oil, computer, financial and hospitality companies. One of the biggest changes and challenges throughout my career was the amount of world-wide travel I continued to do. It was very exciting to be going to all over the world, but at a certain point traveling with 600 pounds of equipment (lots of lighting gear!!) lost its romance. Once at my destination, I could start the job of making images, but living in hotels, rental cars and airports is difficult. In later years, as my work matured and I got older and I gained more success, I was able to alter how I traveled. The body of works that we have selected for this special edition of LandEscape caught our attention in the way they capture the beauty of nature through unique composition. Please walk our readers through your usual setup and process, including your technical equipment. In particular, it seems that you choose particular moments when shooting: what is your working schedule like? Do you carefully plan each shot? With regard to the landscape work, I tend to work very simply and without much of a plan. The day of, or perhaps the day before, I decide what part of the state I am going


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to drive to. I am gone for anywhere between several hours to 3-4 days. These days I travel with two camera systems, one a medium format film camera - a Mamiya 6 with three lenses and the other a medium format digital system, which is an analog Hasselblad ELX with a PhaseOne P45+ digital back, and 6 lenses. I am shooting mostly with the digital system now. I throw these two cases in the back of my SUV and go. When I lived in Seattle, it would take me about 3 hours to get to the part of Washington state that I enjoyed photographing. Once I crossed the Columbia River, the expansive landscapes began to appear. In Montana, I’ve made images ¼ mile from my house, as well as full day’s drive away into Wyoming. I rarely, if ever, leave with a specific plan other than a direction. I leave it all to driving slowly on dirt roads, seeing something that resonates, stopping, getting out of the car and walking around. Sometimes I’m there for 10 seconds and don’t see what I hoped for or I’m there for an hour. Get back in the car and move on. It is not unusual in the least to drive 10 feet and stop again. Or I’m in the car all day and never make an image. I don’t always depend on time of day to dictate shooting or not. I’ve made successful images at high noon, as well as during the “magic hours.” As you remarked in your artist's statement, simplicity, graphic shapes, strong lines or shapes that repeat are what “do it for me.” What role does aesthetics play in your approach to photography? Yes, I totally believe that those elements of “simplicity, graphic shapes, strong lines or shapes” and repetition of shapes come from the work I’ve done for the last 40 years within the world of commercial photography. Those visuals were always a starting point for me; I’d walk into, for instance, a Boeing factory and immediately seek them out. It became instinctual because it pleased me and it pleased clients as well. Because most of those factories and offices are usually visually chaotic, it was a way to isolate the subject of a photograph. Those elements and lighting were tools that I always relied on. So that aesthetic just continued to grow. When I began to seriously shoot landscapes, I don’t even believe I thought about it, it just happened out of habit that I would react to the same elements. Your images, void of people, reflect an accurate representation of being there: in this sense, it seems like you have a deep connection to nature. Is this something that sparked your love for photography? How important




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do you believe it is for a landscape photographer to love the outdoors, not just the results? Oh Boy. Well, I was raised by parents who loved to camp and fish, especially my father. He also is responsible for my interest in photography! He always traveled on vacation with a very nice camera in those

days and always involved me in his picture taking. But to be honest, their love of the outdoors and camping didn’t get handed down to me. I love being in movie theatres, galleries, bars and restaurants. My commercial work almost always had people in the photos and in thinking about it right now, perhaps the landscape work in the type of areas I react to was a


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way to work without people. (Oddly enough, my

When in Montana, especially the outlying areas of

favorite thing to shoot commercially were portraits!!)

Bozeman, there are scenes that I could not believe I

But, I do just fine being alone. Reading back what I

was witnessing! Mountain vistas, rivers jutting

just wrote, I realize there’s a sort of dichotomy going

through canyons, crazy shafts of light cutting through

on.

clouds and amazing valley scenes that would literally take your breath away; and I loved seeing them! But





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only rarely would I stop to shoot.

aspect of it that I photograph that isn’t always what

Someone was in the car with me once when we witnessed almost all those things together in Paradise Valley, MT and I just kept driving. She sarcastically said, “too pretty???” Yeah, kinda. I’m not out looking for postcards. I do love the outdoors, but there is an

others might think of as “pretty.” Pretty doesn’t always offer compositions that light me up. Two days ago I was out in the middle of nowhere in New Mexico and saw an abandoned roadside picnic area


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surrounded by desolation. I spent about 45 minutes there. A unique visual quality that marks out many of your landscapes is your sapient use of large amounts of

black and white nuances that seem to be laboriously structured to produce your powerful and thoughtful visual impact: what are your aesthetic decisions about the use of black and white and how do you decide to shoot a specific photo in b/w?


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I think what typically dictates that a shot will end up being in black and white is the graphic element of what I find. A good example of that is a shot I did in Eastern Washington of crop rows winding through a snowy field. The repetition of the black shapes, the

white environment and the bleak overcast sky made it a graphic no-brainer for me. There’s another shot I did in Montana that was during a white-out storm. Everything was white!! And just barely visible was a road snaking through the middle of the frame that





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was also white. It just had to be black and white for me. Winter is a great time to think in black and white. It’s all about a blank environment with whatever shapes pop out of it. Your artworks seem to reflect a sense of connection with your surroundings. You reside in Santa Fe, New

Mexico, and your work as a photographer keeps you on the road constantly. Your landscapes are inspired from the environments of Montana, California, Wyoming, Washington and everything in between: how does your daily experience, as well as your travels, fuel your creative process?


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I don’t think it’s my daily experience that fuels my creative process. I believe it’s my past experience that contributes to it. One of my biggest influences in all of my work is Arnold Newman, one of the greatest portrait photographers of the 20�� century. His mantra in class was to immerse ones self in all forms of art, not just photography, but painting, illustration,

cinema, writing, music, etc. as well. I don’t know if I’ve ever picked up a camera since without thinking, even briefly, about that. His portraits of people have influenced all aspects of my work, even my landscapes. There’s a photograph that I did for the Weyerhaeuser Paper Company - while I was lighting and shooting it, it conjured up a scene from Close


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Encounters of the Third Kind. And Mr. Newman’s words about art history were then, and still are, in the back of my mind. Artists that have come before me in all manner of mediums are what fuel me. We note the way you have created such insightful resonance with the landscapes: how do you select

the specific locations and how do they affect your shooting process? I think that my locations choose me: I’ll be driving down a dirt road and they’ll scream at me, “HEY, DO YOU SEE WHAT I’M SHOWING YOU? Look at this row of telephone poles that stretch endlessly through my


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bleak landscape to the horizon. They’re graphic and repeating. WAKE UP!!!!” We have really appreciated the striking ethereal ambience in Mammoth Hot Springs, Wyoming: how did you come about settling on your color palette? And how does your own psychological make-up determine the nuances in tones that you decide to include in your photographs? The color palette of those images and the other color images from Montana photos came about as a result of my wanting to experiment in color, but hating my color landscapes. There was nothing special about the results and all that remained was the eye I brought to the compositions. And it wasn’t enough. So, I spent about 3 months experimenting with a more interpretive and painterly look brought about by working within a few different computer programs. I finally found a look that I liked. It is at this point that I will say one of my favorite painters and definite influence is Russell Chatham. I first noticed his work on the covers of Jim Harrison’s novels and they immediately resonated. As did Jim’s writing! (I’m not sure anyone is ready for me to discuss my “psychological make-up”… But let’s just say I’m an only child that tends to pout if any one crop row, telephone pole or curvy road doesn’t line up just right!) Provocatively, German photographer Thomas Ruff once stated that "nowadays you don't have to paint to be an artist. You can use photography in a realistic way." You can even do abstract photographs. What is your opinion about the importance of photography in contemporary art? That’s a huge question. I think photography should be a very important part of the contemporary art world! But I don’t think it necessarily is. Right now I’m in Santa Fe, New Mexico, renowned for its galleries. I think there are two now that have only photography and the rest are resistant to including photographs with the other paintings, sculpture, etc. I understand that they want to specialize. There are definitely photographers now that are prospering in this current climate. I’m always very happy when I see a photographer succeed in being recognized and doing


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good work. It’s encouraging and it only serves to help the rest of us. (BTW, since being here I’ve met two photographers that are doing fantastic work and being acknowledged for it!!!) You are an established artist: how do you consider the nature of your relationship with your audience? By the way, as art increasingly moves from traditional gallery spaces, to street and especially to online platforms as Instagram, how does this change the relationship with a globalized audience? My audiences for decades were graphic designers and art buyers for the corporate world. For much of that time, I loved my relationships with them because of the autonomy I was given on assignment. Very rarely did I have an art director on location with me. There were lots and lots of conversations beforehand, of course. But on location it was typically just me, my assistant and a contact person. What this communicated to me was the aspect of trust, something that is very important - being able to receive it and provide it as well. How this translates into the fine art world is yet to be seen in full. Of course trust is important in any relationship. But I know as I move away from the commercial world towards the art world, different aspects of relationships will reveal themselves. With regard to moving away from traditional gallery space, I was speaking with one of those two very talented photographers I mentioned earlier. She told me she recently had an exhibition in an empty pool at an old motel here in town. I love it!!! We have really appreciated the multifaceted nature of your artistic research. Before leaving this stimulating conversation we would like to thank you for chatting with us and for sharing your thoughts, Jeff. What are some of the countries or regions you would like to visit, and photograph, in the coming years? Should there ever be a time when another country will accept a traveling American, top of my list to photograph is Iceland! Thank you so much for having me take part in this process. I sincerely appreciate your interest in my work!


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LandEscape meets

Colette Hosmer Contemporary naturalist who is celebrated internationally for her outdoor sculptures and installation work with organic materials. Born in 1946, Hosmer grew up in a small town in rural North Dakota. She studied art at the University of North Dakota and at Linn Benton College. Hosmer worked as the director of Shidoni Gallery in Santa Fe, New Mexico before beginning a professional career as an artist at the age of 44. Since then Hosmer’s work has been exhibited in prestigious museums throughout the world. Her work is among the permanent collections of the City of Xiamen, China Tianjin, China; City of Yanqing, China; New Mexico Museum of Fine Arts, Santa Fe, NM; The Albuquerque Museum – Albuquerque, NM; The Eitlejorg Museum, Indianapolis, IN; and Contemporary Artspace – Potsdam, Germany.

An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Melissa C. Hilborn, curator landescape@europe.com

Hello Colette and welcome to LandEscape. Before starting to elaborate about your artistic production, we would like to invite our readers to visit http://colettehosmer.com in order to get a wide idea about your multifaceted artistic production, and we would start this interview with a couple of questions about your background. You have a solid formal training and you studied art at the University of North Dakota and at Linn-Benton College: how did those formative years influence your evolution as an artist and help you to develop your attitude toward experimentation? Moreover, how does your cultural substratum direct your current artistic research? Colette Hosmer: To describe my art education as “solid formal training” would be a stretch.

Attending the University of North Dakota was, for me, analogous to landing in a foreign country without knowing the culture or the language. Instead, my formative years began at root level. I was born into a small rural community in north central North Dakota and, along with my two older sisters, grew up in the same house in which our father was raised. My mother came from a farm 13 miles away, not far from where her French-Canadian grandparents homesteaded in the late 1800’s. The first big Dakota Territory settlement “boom” also brought Norwegian and German settlers. Our town (population 600) spilled from the foothills of the Turtle Mountains – a glacierformed, pond and stream studded plateau of hills that straddled the Canadian border. And, just north of town, the Turtle Mountain Indian Reservation spread across the hills and wetlands. That place and time provided the



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cultural substratum that influenced my career. The prairie shot off flat as an ocean to the south. North America’s central bird migratory flyway passed directly overhead – a portion of which landed on our dinner table each fall hunting season. We fished winter and summer. It was normal in that time and place to experience the transition from life to death to food. Drawing, painting and working with clay felt as natural as catching minnows in the creek near my home. I was equally intrigued with art and the natural environment. Linn-Benton College came on the heels of a 9year marriage. I gathered up my son and daughter and moved to Oregon where my oldest sister encouraged me to take a couple of art classes while I acclimated to a new life. New life indeed! I loved every minute of the three years spent at LBC – my first art-community experience. Three art professors, along with another student and I, built a gypsy bronze foundry, where we cast our work in bronze after class hours. I was hooked. Linn-Benton became a launching pad for a move to Santa Fe, New Mexico. There I found work in the gift shop of the Museum of Fine Arts. My lunch hours were spent perusing the changing exhibitions. A year later, I graduated to the next level of my irregular education – Shidoni, a bronze casting foundry and gallery with eight acres of monumental sculpture gardens located a few miles north of Santa Fe. All foundry and gallery employees, most of whom were struggling artists, were offered the gift of utilizing the foundry facilities to produce their own art on their own time. An early cast bronze body of work, Contemporary Fossils, included a complete cat skeleton imbedded in clay-modeled “stone,” wearing a collar and bell.


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After eight years with Shidoni (the last three years as Director of the new Contemporary Gallery), my “science” side wanted equal time. I accepted an opportunity to move to San Francisco for a year to direct Neurotechnologies Research Institute – a non-profit designed to study brain-influencing devices. Upon returning home to Santa Fe, I was faced with finding employment again or taking the plunge – trading job security for an opportunity to create. My previous jobs took precedence over my time and energy and I was looking for a way to change that. I had no money. After a few sleepless nights fighting near paralysis, I made a decision. The Santa Fe New Mexican had an opening for a newspaper delivery person. I sat for the interview and got the job. A few weeks later, I added a second route to the first. I rose at 3:00 a.m. each morning, picked-up my newspaper bundles, delivered the last paper at 7:30 a.m. and headed home. A notebook traveled on the seat beside me as I delivered papers…and soon it was filled with sketches, notes, thoughts. Santa Fe was asleep, and I had the world to myself. Later, I added a third job as “girl Friday” to a rich lady. I fed her numerous dogs and cats, bought her groceries, cleaned her pool and did her yard work. I had from 11:00 a.m. until a 7:30 bedtime – eight glorious hours – to spend in my studio. My head and heart were liberated. Creative freedom – the ability to work without the influence of outside persuasion, rules and obligations – is a wonderful thing. I followed wherever inspiration led. The body of works that we have selected for this special edition of LandEscape, and those that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article, have at once captured our attention in the way they provide the viewers with such an immersive and multilayered visual experience: when walking our readers






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through your usual setup and process, would you tell us how did you develop your initial idea? Colette Hosmer: The untamed geography of northern New Mexico’s mountains, arroyos and the color-splashed Chinle Formation provided both raw materials and inspiration. My studio came to reflect the natural world as I hauled bones, rocks, soil and vegetation back to my studio from my wanderings. I built a “beetle ranch” – a humidified, heat-controlled environment for tens of thousands of Dermestid beetles that happily assisted me in preparing articulated skeletons. These industrious little insects cleaned skeletons in university Zoology laboratories, on the plains of Africa and in my studio as well. I was influenced by my environment, whether I was in the studio or the natural world. When my brain offered “ideas,” they often felt calculated. I learned to give my intellect a back seat and allowed inspiration to surface through the senses. We have appreciated the way your artworks invite viewers to elaborate personal associations, and that provide your works with a unique aesthetic identity. New York City based artist Lydia Dona once stated that in order to make art today one has to reevaluate the conceptual language behind the mechanism of art making itself: do you create your works gesturally, instinctively? Or do you methodically transpose geometric schemes? In particular, how do you consider the relation between the nature of the concepts that you explore in your artistic research and the physical aspect of your daily practice as an artist? Colette Hosmer: I generally begin by working in the studio until a direction takes form. The aspect of seeing – moving my hands, activating my senses – is the method I use to create. I often


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have to discard initial work as one step progresses to the next. Over time, the process of physically engaging with the materials at hand can instinctually open the door to a body of work. I have produced exhibitions while living in China, where a typical day began with an early morning trip to the nearest food market. These markets are centuries-old bazaars where long aisles of tables display fresh pigs, chickens, ducks and goats, with various parts hung from hand-forged hooks, or were stacked neatly, as in concentric circles of chicken gizzards that always reminded me of lotus blossoms. Other lanes trafficked in seafood (much of it swimming in aerated tubs) or vibrant mounds of fresh vegetables, medicinal herbs and fruit. A few hours wandering through one of these markets was always an invigorating experience. The cacophony of sounds (chopping, bargaining, birdsong and motorbikes) mixed with the sights, tastes and smells, all melded into a sublime racket of life. Your sapient use of references to easily recognizable figures, such as parts of the human body and stylized fish, give your artworks such a unique allegorical quality: of what importance are symbols and metaphors in your artistic research? Colette Hosmer: It seems that underlying much of my work lies a reference to the similarity of all living things. If you look at the cells of a lion or a human under a microscope, you would not be able to tell which cells belong to which species. It is easy to forget that we are a species of animal, with similar basic drives and needs: food, territory, procreation. I am forever drawn to multiples. An ant or cell cannot survive on its own, but when grouped together the totality becomes something greater than the sum of its parts. The repetition of a single




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unit or pattern makes sense to me instinctively. Minnows were my “unit” of choice for many years. In Pipeline, I assembled tens of thousands of the little fish to simulate water pouring from a pipe installed nine feet up on a museum wall. The stream of minnows splashed onto the floor and flowed outward in ripples to form a pool. Your installations often provide the viewers with such an immersive visual experience: how important is it for you to select the exhibition space, and how do you consider the relationship between the work of art and the exhibition space? Colette Hosmer: I have rarely had the opportunity to select an exhibition space, so the challenge becomes to link the work with the site. This is especially rewarding when working with outdoor installations. For example, I was commissioned to create a large-scale sculpture for a seaside park in the city of Xiamen, China, an ancient port city that overlooked the Pacific Ocean. Fabricated in stainless steel, Rhythm was comprised of four identical “waves” that, when assembled close together, implied the dome of the sea. One especially daunting challenge came with an invitation from the Chief Curator of Santa Fe’s Museum of Fine Arts (now The New Mexico Museum of Art), Tim Rogers, to include my work with a major traveling exhibition, Still-Life Painting and the Medici Collections. I had been creating three-dimensional still-life pieces after the style of 17th and 18th century still-life paintings for a few years. I admired this genre of painting – its reminder of the fragility and brevity of life, and its unblinking ability to present death in the midst of abundant life.


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Along with creating a series of still-life sculptures, Rogers asked me to choose one of the Medici paintings in the exhibition to replicate in three dimensions. I chose Jacopo da Empoli’s 1630 still-life painting Fish and Crustaceans. I was blissfully ignorant of the monumental task at hand. I seem to begin most worthwhile adventures this way. Over months, through the solitary exercise of three-dimensional sculpting of the crab, eight fish, several eels, seaweed, pottery and fruit depicted in Empoli’s dimly lit, two-dimensional artwork, making a mold of each clay duplicate, casting each in Hydrostone and finally painting to replicate the original, I earned a true understanding of the statement made by the great still-life painter Jean Simeon Chardin in his studio in 1765, “After interminable days and nights burning the midnight oil in front of immobile, inanimate nature, we are presented with living nature; and suddenly the work of all the preceding years seems reduced to nothing: You have to train the eye to look at nature; and how many have never seen it and never will.” We would love to ask you about the qualities of the materials that you include in your artworks: how do you select them and what kind of materials do you plan to include in your next projects? Colette Hosmer: As word spread about what I was doing in my studio, friends began to appear at my door with “gifts” – a porcupine struck by a car, snakes that met their end sunning too long on warm pavement. A pet store owner in town saved birds, reptiles and mammals that had expired and gave me a call when his freezer was full. Taxidermist friends in Wyoming shipped frozen animals to me after removing the hides and claws for mounting. A snake breeder in




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Texas shipped recently departed 11-foot-long Pythons and Boa Constrictors my way. Organic materials provide a direct connection to the world I live in. I have explored the anatomy of hundreds of mammals, birds, reptiles and fish, and used the resulting material as my medium in works of art. Living and working in such an environment makes for a rich experience. With their unique visual identity, your artworks – especially Pig Teats – challenge the viewers’ perceptual parameters: we daresay that your artistic practice seems to aim to look inside of what appears to be seen, rather than its surface, providing the spectatorship with freedom to realize their own perception. Austrian Art historian Ernst Gombrich once remarked on the importance of providing a space for the viewers to project onto, so that they can actively participate in the creation of the illusion: how important is it for you to trigger the viewers’ imagination in order to address them to elaborate personal interpretations? In particular, how open would you like your works to be understood? Colette Hosmer: I love this question. Attaching a specific “meaning” to a piece or body of work is something I try to avoid doing. My own interpretation can change over time – and often I do not have words to explain what a particular work “means.” There can be as many personal interpretations of an artwork as there are individual viewers. Pig Teats evolved from a predawn trip into the mountains in Fujian Province, China. I had arranged to witness the “pig to market” ritual performed in the same way it had been done in rural China for hundreds of years. I admired the system by which the pig fuels China. In the countryside, pigs consume all table scraps and


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garden waste, and do not require pasture; sows provide two large litters a year; the pigs feed the populace and fertilize the garden - a complete and flawless cycle. While watching the process, I sensed no sentimentality, no gratuitous roughness, just the efficient, fluid movements required to do the work. There was a moment during the butchering when I slipped in puddles of mud. Reflexes kicked in as I regained my balance and in that moment I became conscious of where I was. For a time, the separate components of fire, vapor, sow, men and I merged as one thing – my sense of an individual reality had collapsed. That was a deeply emotional experience and a rare one. Your artworks seem to reflect a sense of connection with the surroundings and to the idea of landscape: how does your everyday life’s experience fuel your creative process? Colette Hosmer: I would spend as much time as I do in the natural environment whether I chose to make art or not. Few places in the U.S. boast as rich a diversity of geologic landscape and public lands as northern New Mexico. And, since I have lived in Santa Fe for decades, I have trekked most of it. I once exhibited a solo show, A Physical Map of the Earth, with works cast from the rich variety of soils that I collected. I hauled home green and purple mudstone in backpacks, collected white, yellow and red sand, and once found a few extraordinary veins of pink volcanic ash running through road-cuts of solid rock. Included in the body of work were pink-ash frosted sandstone doughnuts, red sand “hotdogs” with squiggles of yellow-clay “mustard,” white gypsum-sand cakes with black earth icing and dozens of cast-preserve




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jars “filled� with a color palette of natural earth. We humans often live as though we are somehow isolated from the rest of life. The understanding that we exist as overlapping environments is fading, and instead of being a part of the landscape, we stand apart and observe the world around us. Time spent in nature helps to keep me grounded in the natural world. You are an established artist and over the years your artworks have been showcased worldwide and collected by museums in China, as well as in Santa Fe, Albuquerque, Indianapolis and Germany: how do you consider the nature of your relationship with your audience? By the way, as the move of Art from traditional gallery spaces, to street and especially to online platforms such as Instagram increases, how does this, in your opinion, change the relationship with a globalized audience? Colette Hosmer: An art career, by its nature, requires an incredible amount of help, good fortune and luck. Print and online platforms offer a breathtaking leap into the consciousness of people everywhere. Lectures, presentations and press provide opportunities to stimulate new ways of thinking and being. Every culture has produced its own unique art. Art is the universal language that can generate empathy, stimulate dialogue and build new relationships and ideas in the world community we live in. We have really appreciated the multifaceted nature of your artistic research and before leaving the simulating conversation we would like to thank you for chatting with us


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and for sharing your thoughts, Colette. What projects are you currently working on, and what are some of the ideas that you hope to explore in the future? Colette Hosmer: I traveled to China early this year to produce a permanent outdoor sculpture installation for the new Hancher Auditorium at the University of Iowa – a performing arts theater hosting Broadway musicals, contemporary dance and classical music. By the end of January, the COVID-19 virus outbreak began a worldwide pandemic and I was obliged to return to the United States two months earlier than planned. I regretted having to leave Chongwu, the ancient seaside town where I had produced several works in stone in previous years. We are currently working out the practical logistics of positioning and installing the work during this time of Covid-19. The 30 granite fish (each measuring 2‘ H x 4’ L) will flow from the entrance of the Hancher Auditorium. The building was designed by architect César Pelli, Senior Principal at the world renowned firm Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects. The landscaped environment surrounding the building is a work of art in itself. The challenge, therefore, becomes to arrange thirty identical pieces so that, collectively, they flow from the building, integrate with the environment and finally coalesce as one piece. As I “social distance” in Santa Fe, I have taken to pinning thousands of identical paper fish to my walls in order to explore dynamic flow patterns. Before I go, I want to thank you for your compelling publication and for the opportunity to respond to your excellent questions.


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LandEscape meets

Kathleen Frank Having been an art teacher, woodcarver and a printmaker in my formative art years, I emerged as a painter, awash in color and searching for pattern. While seeking brilliance in color is a worthy goal, pattern in nature is primal - the need to find a glimmer of logic in a vastly complicated, confusing and tumbled landscape. The goal is lofty, but when the quest is conducted with paint and brush, it is a joyously daunting adventure. Color and pattern are everywhere, but the seeing and the interpretation of them are different for each of us. I look for the brilliance and the gaiety of life around me. I try to catch the light and design in all its strangeness and beauty. There is so much joy and adventure to paint in one lifetime. My paintings can be seen at La Posada de Santa Fe in Santa Fe, New Mexico. The curator is Sara Eyestone. Her contact number is 505-954-9668. In Tucson, Arizona, they can be found at the Jane Hamilton Fine Art Gallery.

Kathleen Frank was born and raised in Northern California and had the good fortune of being surrounded by teachers and artists. She earned a BA in Design and a K-12 teaching credential from San Jose State University and taught art in California, Colorado and Pennsylvania. Later she earned a MA degree with an emphasis in printmaking from Pennsylvania State University. She created and ran the Printmakers Studio Workshop of Central Pennsylvania for four years with Mary Lou Pepe. For many years she specialized in woodcarving and fabric printing. Kathleen now paints the landscapes of her three homes: California, New Mexico and everything in between. She lives in the wilds of Santa Fe with her intellectual husband and hikes daily with her two magic corgies.

An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Melissa C. Hilborn, curator landescape@europe.com

Hello Kathleen and welcome to LandEscape. Before starting to elaborate about your artistic production and we

would like to invite our readers to visit https://kathleenfrankart.com in order to get a wide idea about your multi-faceted artistic production, and we would start this interview with a couple of questions about your background. You have a solid




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formal training and after having earned your BA in Design and a K-12 teaching credential from San Jose State University, you nurtured your education with a MA degree with an emphasis in Printmaking from Pennsylvania State University: how did those formative years influence your evolution as an artist and help you to develop your attitude to experiment? Moreover, how does your cultural substratum direct your current artistic research? Kathleen Frank: My parents gave me a culturally fantastic childhood that set me solidly on the art trail. My father was an adventure skier, music teacher, Dean of Boys, Air Force instructor, college counselor and foreign student advisor. He filled our home with students from around the world, bringing their ideas, languages, food and music. My mother was the granddaughter of “49ers� who had come across the country in 1849 in wagon trains to California in search of adventure and freedom. As a teenager she worked as a camp counselor in Washington State and Hawaii. Both of my parents were the first in their families to go to college. At the University of California my mother lived in the International House where she met scholars from the far corners of the world, and she developed a keen desire to see it for herself. My mother was an elementary school teacher her whole life, and she warmed our home with story telling, a love of history and reading,

music and art. Teachers have summers free to travel and that is what we did as a family. Several summers we drove in our Chevy station wagon through western Canada where I was fascinated by the totem poles and masks of the indigenous peoples. Other summers we drove deep into Mexico where I absorbed the colors and design of the Mayan and Aztec cultures. One summer was spent exploring Guatemala and El Salvador, visiting students, weavers, artists and the Mayan pyramids of Tikal before it was fully excavated. Several summer driving trips through Europe exposed me to the fabulous museums and artists homes and galleries. We found relatives in Ireland, Scotland and Norway. While I was in college we all took a semester off and went around the world. My father visited former students and ministers of education. My mother took us into schools from Japan to Ireland. We watched children being taught outside under the trees, saw schools with monkeys swinging in the rafters and visited the familiar classrooms of Europe. In all of these experiences my sister and I were exposed to the color and chaos, love and laughter of diversity. With a childhood like this, it is not hard to imagine growing into adulthood with a sense of adventure and a liberal, internationalist view of the world.


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However, you have to start somewhere. Both my sister and I chose to become teachers. Education I understood, and art was the one thing that I loved and was good at. It had given our family a splendid life and I wanted that to continue. I met my husband Bill while teaching on Edwards Air Force Base in the Mojave Desert during the Vietnam War. He had been a “Navy brat� and had lived in Morocco, Guam and both US coasts, and he too had traveled through Asia and Europe. We backpacked and skied and planned for him to go to grad school to study environmental science. The environmental movement was well underway and we wanted to be a part of it. We moved to Colorado where I studied woodcarving and Bill found a home in the Atmospheric Science Department at Colorado State University where he studied tropical meteorology. That resulted in a professorship in the Meteorology department at Penn State University and a concern for climate change and global environmental justice. While at Penn State I studied printmaking. I began a project of printing on fabric and creating masks and costumes of imaginary goddesses that could tell the stories of social and environmental concerns. I drew on the mask traditions that I had seen in Mexico, Canada, Bali and the Hopi pueblos of Arizona. I wrote the stories into song and had


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friends perform in the costumes with such varied titles as “MOTHER LUNGS – GODDESS OF VANISHING WILDERNESS,” “MEGABYTES LOST – GODDESS OF DIGITAL DISCONTENT” and “ASPHALT GODDESS – MACADAM MA.” For this special edition of LandEscape we have selected FOR THE WHOLE, a stimulating project that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. It has at once captured our attention of your works is the way they unveil the bond between reality and its interpretation, providing the viewers with a shared experience: when walking our readers through your usual setup and process, would you tell us how did you develop your initial idea? Kathleen Frank: I was painting throughout the events noted in the previous answer and the elements of mark making in wood carving and woodcuts in printmaking came naturally with the brush. I am not sure what prompted the red/orange ground, but with the way I paint, the ground will show through and what would be more joyful than red? It is the color of Swedish Dala horses, Chinese luck and the tropical setting sun. When we moved to Santa Fe, New Mexico I left behind my wonderful press and printmaking studio and began painting full time. I had the tradition, culture and aesthetics of the art and artists




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of Santa Fe and Taos to live up to. I am incredibly grateful to be a part of it. In our pre-Covid life, we were on the road several times a year exploring the West or heading for the family cabin in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Our progress was always slowed by the frequent stops and side trips to get photos. I see a potential painting and compose with my camera. When I returned home and loaded the images into Photoshop Lightroom to be cropped or brightened, I may have only one or two turn into paintings. If magic happened I may get several. Once magic happened on a trip to Telluride, Colorado. We arrived under rain and dense cloud cover. Not a mountain to be seen. In the morning we drove to our favorite spot and I was almost in tears when the clouds suddenly lifted to reveal the yellows and oranges of the aspen topped by spectacular snow covered peaks. Then I really did cry. That place makes your heart sing. I am still painting it. I am not making it up. I paint what I see. Each painting creates its own interpretation and I do not know what is going to happen. I do grid my red canvas and draw in the landscape with chalk, but how it develops is up to the image to decide. It is much like sculptors say about the form revealing itself in the stone or writers who say, like my

husband-turned-crime-novelist, that the characters tell them what is going to happen.


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The colorful palette that marks out your artistic production reflects your search for

the brilliance and the gaiety of life around yourself: how did you structure your palette


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in order to achieve such correspondence with your feelings? In particular, how does

your own psychological make-up determine the tones of your artworks?


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Kathleen Frank: You can surround yourself with people who make you

smile, a cozy fireplace and candles to produce a Danish, Hygge-like


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atmosphere, searching out beauty where you can find it, or paint it for yourself and fill your home with it. My home is full of all these things that bring me joy and I have been blessed in my life to have the freedom to make this happen. My palette will always start with rich, density of thalo blue and green for the deep shadows that are needed to give the brighter colors some punch. Indian yellow is almost always featured close to full strength for light oranges or liberally mixed with white for lighter yellows to give a spark of gaiety. It is always there in the image if you look closely. Often the color is muted and needs to be discovered and brought to life, again like the characters in novels. As you remarked in your artist's statement, color and pattern are everywhere, but the seeing and the interpretation of them are different for each of us. French artist, Edgar Degas, once remarked that "Art is not what you see, but what you make others see": how do you consider the importance of triggering the viewers' perceptual parameters in order to address them to elaborate personal interpretations? In particular, how open would you like your works to be understood? Kathleen Frank: I have often been surprised and delighted at the comments made about my paintings. I am not hoping for any particular way of seeing or emotion except as a celebration of nature in all its splendor. I


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sometimes think of myself as a portrait painter, but my portraits are of mountains, barns, silos, trees and valleys. A portrait of a person is not just meant to be a record of the way they look but also of the way they felt. Portraits of landscapes should do the same. Your landscapes are inspired from the environments of your three homes, in California, New Mexico and everything in between: how does your daily experience fuel your creative process? Kathleen Frank: My daily routine pre-Covid and during Covid has been the same. I harness the dogs, drive to the trailhead at the other end of my neighborhood, hook them to a tandem leash, don my pack with bear bells and hike 3-5 miles. The trails are in full view of the Sangre de Christo Mountains, the southern end of the Rocky Mountain chain on the east and the Jemez Mountains on the west. The trees are mostly pinon pine and juniper that are small enough that they do not impede the view. In the winter I use snowshoes, and in the ice I use crampons. This gets me close to nature every day and clears my mind for the work ahead. Our home in Pennsylvania was on a mountain and surrounded by tall trees. You did not know how to dress for the day because the climate was different in the valley. The state was made up of ridges and valleys and there were micro climates and micro views of just a few miles. In Pennsylvania I painted the colorful farms


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that I could see because everything else was green. In New Mexico, Colorado, California and everything in between you can see for 75 to 100 miles. In the west

there is color everywhere and the views are macro. Think of the Rocky Mountains, the Grand Canyon and Death Valley. This is


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seeing on a grand scale and inspiring for an artist.

You are an established artist and your painting can be seen at La Posada de Santa Fe in Santa Fe, New Mexico: how do you consider the nature of your


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relationship with your audience? By the way, as the move of Art from traditional gallery spaces, to street and especially to online platforms as Instagram increases,

how does this, in your opinion, change the relationship with a globalized audience?




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Kathleen Frank: While in Pennsylvania, I was doing performance art with my Goddesses, art fairs and occasional gallery shows. When I came to Santa Fe, I began showing at La Posada de Santa Fe. It has a storied history as an art hotel and had recently taken on Sara Eyestone as the art curator. She improved the presentation and pushed it to new heights. This hotel attracted people from across the country and around the world. Since then I have also been showing at the Jane Hamilton gallery in Tucson, Arizona, the Saks Galleries | Cherry Creek in Denver, Colorado and J.J. Gillespie Gallery in McMurray, Pennsylvania. At the hotel in Santa Fe and the gallery in Tucson I often had opportunities to meet people viewing my work and to talk about my paintings. Things have changed. People are not coming to Santa Fe during the pandemic and I am not traveling. I am happy with the gallery system and know little, and care less, about online platforms. I am a dinosaur who is being pushed in that direction. I had better start learning. For my part, I would be reluctant to buy fine art without seeing it. We have really appreciated the multifaceted nature of your artistic research and before leaving this stimulating conversation we would like to thank you for chatting with us and for

sharing your thoughts, Kathleen. What projects are you currently working on, and what are some of the ideas that you hope to explore in the future? Kathleen Frank: As things stand I have so many images loaded into my computer that I could paint for the next 25 years, but I am running out of canvases. For a while we were told to only take easy hikes and not risk damage to life and limb because they did not want non-Covid people in the emergency rooms. I began hiking up the arroyo on safe sand and found the beauty of those micro spaces with the meandering water trails, the undercut banks with roots of the trees exposed and the thriving chamisa trying to hold onto their grip in the soil despite the occasional inundation of a flash flood common in arroyos following thunderstorms. I took my camera and recorded this walk for paintings of life close to home. The next step is to acquire more canvases. I thank you for these questions. They have helped make me a better artist.

An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Melissa C. Hilborn, curator landescape@europe.com


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LandEscape meets

Warwick Samuel The involvement of the viewer in the painted image seems to have always existed. From the age of 15-unusually young with hindsight – I have painted outdoors, plein air. Over the years the lessons all artists learn the hard way have been honed into a process involving large scale drawings, (to prevent being drawn into detail) small scale water colour studies and later, when more understanding is needed, a plein air oil painting. In the studio all this information of composition, tone and colour are slowly merged into a painting which takes on its own life and direction.The work in neither abstract or too descriptive whilst leaving no doubt as to what has fascinated and obsessed the artist. The optically clear water of the Hampshire rivers and streams is unique, the water reflects and refracts simultaneously; one minute gravel lying on the chalk looks to be a path, the next, distorted by water currents or gentle breezes is a kaleidoscope of colour and reflected leaves. It is, of course, impossible to paint!- the obsession continues and the struggle to communicate the beauty of this part of the planet continues‌

An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Katherine Williams, curator

artistic production, and we would start this

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your background. You have been painting

Hello Warwick and welcome to LandEscape. Before starting to elaborate about your artistic production and we would like to invite our readers to visit https://www.warwicksamuel.co.uk in order to get a wide idea about your mulifaceted

interview with a couple of questions about since the age of 15: you graduated from Manchester University and you later nurtured your education attending the Newlyn School Art Mentoring Course: how did those formative years influence your evolution as an artist? Moreover, how does



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your cultural substratum direct the trajectory of your current artistic research? Warwick Samuel: Hello and thank you for the opportunity to discuss my work. I had a scientific education in Manchester and which led to a doctorate from laboratory research. The need to be precise and careful can, on the one hand can inhibit freedom of artistic expression, but on the other hand careful and thorough observation and the ability to concentrate is a huge benefit, as is the ability to plan a series of work. University life also is about friendship and most importantly, I met my wife there and who is an invaluable art critic! I carried on painting over these years but intensive work limited how much artistic work I could do. When I was more in charge of my time I became acutely aware of the need to share artistic problems and to talk to like minded individuals. The Mentors at Newlyn are all working artists and they all provided valuable insights into my work and deficiencies, no matter what their own practices were. I am now more able to asses and be more critical of the paintings I do. The mentoring also focused my mind on what I wanted to do. For this special edition of LandEscape we have selected The River Light, a stimulating series that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. As you have remarked, your series aims to describe the light on the crystal clear waters of Hampshire chalk rivers, and we have been struck with the way you structured your works in order to provide the viewers with


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such multilayered visual experience. When walking our readers through the genesis of The River Light, would you tell us how important is for you to focus on themes that belongs to your everyday life's experience? Warwick Samuel: Thank you, the series started off accidentally when I found myself repeatedly drawn back to the same area. I gradually realised there were unique properties to the chalk rivers in Hampshire, which are world famous for the fishing they provide. The water flows over chalk and any impurities in the water are filtered out through the porous chalk. The water is so clear that when the light strikes the water directly , or perpendicularly to the surface it is transparent and the river bed and gravel lying on the chalk appears as the surface, other areas where the light is refracted show an alteration of colour and tone. When walking along the river there is a constant, daily and second by second shift in the light and transparency, at times there would appear to be no water when the water flow is slow and the river bed clearly seen. At other times, the light is completely reflected as strong highlights and with impenetrable darks. At some times of the year when the light is muted there are no colour changes and the tones are uniform- not a day for painting! We have really appreciated the vibrancy of thoughtful nuances that mark out your artworks, and we like the way they create tension and dynamics: how did you come about settling on your color palette? And how does your own psychological make-up




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determine the nuances of tones that you decide to include in a specific artwork in order to immerse the viewer into the depths of the subconscious?

Warwick Samuel: That is a good question!- I think that ones psychological make up does strongly influence the outcome of the painting I do find that the darker tones and


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how to express them without the painting being too gloomy is a battle I enjoy. The “secretive� areas of darks what fascinates me and it has become more of an

obsession and to paint these areas without too jarring a contrast to the lights. At times on the river bank it is impossible to separate the water from surrounding foliage the




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“real” and the reflected image. My palette has gradually evolved, but with a tendency to transparent colours. I use some 20 glazes to get the darks I am after. I put the opaque earth colours on first and then glaze repeatedly on top. As you have remarked once, in the studio all the information of composition, tone and colour are slowly merged into a painting which takes on its own life and direction. New York City based artist Lydia Dona once stated that in order to make art today one has to reevaluate the conceptual language behind the mechanism of art making itself: do you create your works gesturally, instinctively? Or do you methodically transpose geometric schemes? Warwick Samuel: A famous Impressionist painter once said that the minute you start thinking you are lost! I am like a lot of landscape artists who find no value in photographic references as once the painting starts in the studio the plain air sketches and colour studies and most importantly, what you remember, takes over instinctively. If gestural marks are “needed” emotionally, then impasto paint and expressive brushwork are instinctively needed, as in River Light 9; whereas the large (150 cms X 150 cms or 5ft X 5 ft) River Light 30, some 20 or 30 layers of glazes were more what the painting ”demanded” The well recognised difficulty is, of course, knowing when to stop! We like the way you artworks convey such a stimulating combination between figurative


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elements and captivating subtle abstract quality: how would you consider the relationship between abstraction and figurative in your practice? In particular, how does representation and a tendency towards abstraction find their balance in your work? Warwick Samuel: Another good question!- I think complete abstraction can sometimes be an easy way out of getting over a message as evidenced by the necessity of giving an abstract painting a title. The ambiguity of total abstraction may not demonstrate the features of a landscape that one is particularly drawn to. I think the river scenes I have done show what I am trying to express, almost without a title being needed. One is not trying to replicate a photograph and indeed most appealing landscape paintings are abstracted to some extent. I think a good corollary is the “dead end “ hyper-realistic portraiture has reached when a photograph of the sitter has the same effect on the viewer.The viewer of the hyper- realist painting is left with admiring technical prowess alone. I think conscious abstraction or setting out to paint abstractly “come what may” is difficult and I think a balance between a figurative and abstracted image should happen rather than be planned in trying to make the very best image one can to share the feel or emotion of being in a particular landscape. I am sure, in the final analysis the results justify the means to demonstrate particular features of the landscape one is trying to show.




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With their unique visual identity, your artworks challenges the viewers' perceptual parameters: we daresay that your artistic practice seems to aim to look inside of what appear to be seen, rather than its surface, providing the spectatorship with freedom to realize their own perception. Austrian Art historian Ernst Gombrich once remarked the

importance of providing a space for the viewers to project onto, so that they can actively participate in the creation of the illusion: how important is for you to trigger the viewers' imagination in order to address them to elaborate personal interpretations? In particular, how open would you like your works to be understood?


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Warwick Samuel: Yes this is very important and leads on from the earlier points you raised about abstraction.If a painting is too figurative the viewer has nothing to project on, as Gombrich succinctly pointed out. Again taking the “dead end� of hyper-realistic paintings one can only really admire the technical skill of the work and the realism of

the image, unlike with the enigmatic Rembrandt portraits where much is suggested and the viewer has more to think about and imagine. I like to engage the viewer to work out what sort of day it was from the light and wonder what lies within the shadows and what is under the surface of the water. I would like my work to be


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understood over a period of time rather than instantaneously. A central aspect of your artistic research is focussed on the exploration of the sense of connection with the surroundings: as a plein air painter, how does this aspect of your practice influence your workflow and how does your everyday life's experience fuel your creative process? Warwick Samuel: Plein air studies, both drawing and paintings, are a personal aide memoire, you are immersed in the surroundings and there is always a vibrancy from a plain air study, one hopes to transfer that vibrancy and add to it in the studio. Vibrancy is I think always lost when doing a studio work but that is I hope, more than offset by the ability to use a greater depth of palette and scale which has an emotional impact on the viewer. One’s creative process is in my experience fuelled by constantly thinking about the work even when not painting and using the pain air work as a foundation. Over the years your artworks have been showcased in several occasions. French artist Edgar Degas, once said that “Art is not what you see, but what you make others see": how do you consider the nature of your relationship with your audience? By the way, as the move of Art from traditional gallery spaces, to street and especially to online platforms — as Instagram — increases, how would in your opinion change the relationship with a globalised audience?


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Warwick Samuel: Thank you, I would agree that art is what you make others see and it is rewarding when what one is trying to achieve is understood. The beauty of landscape paining is that we all interact with the environment and if we can encourage enthusiasm for a particular portrayal of what the artists thinks is beautiful the work has succeeded, it is a reciprocal arrangement ! As you say the art audience is globalised and the best artists from around the world can achieve far greater exposure than they ever could have in the pre internet age, ideas are now swapped, transformed and copied ( ! ) with ease. We have really appreciated the multifaceted nature of your artistic research and before leaving this stimulating conversation we would like to thank you for chatting with us and for sharing your thoughts, Warwick. What projects are you currently working on, and what are some of the ideas that you hope to explore? Warwick Samuel: Thank you again, I am now doing a lot of work on the figure in the landscape which can affect the mood of the painting, it is the start an exciting body of work which emphasises both the figure and the landscape. An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Katherine Williams, curator landescape@europe.com


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LandEscape meets

Margarida Naves Margarida Naves, was born in Lisbon, Portugal, and has graduated in Industrial Design, having later completed a Master's Degree in Interior Design, and a degree in Photography. This artistic medium was an old passion, and she decided to devote herself to the development of her personal writing, where her work portrays the daily landscapes with a poetic approach, close to the oneiric universe. Her practice creates a dialogue where the real and the imaginary are combined, in an abstract or accurate form, giving place to a fictional nature and narrative. The use of color, as it’s consonance with the monochromatic, grant her work an intangible space, which she likes to portray in the form of a graphic diary.

An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Katherine Williams, curator landescape@europe.com

Hello Margarida and welcome to LandEscape. Before starting to elaborate about your artistic production and we would like to invite our readers to visit https://www.margaridanaves.com in order to get a wide idea about your multifaceted artistic production, and we would start this interview with a couple of questions about your multifaceted background. You have a solid formal training: after your studies in Industrial Design, you earned your Master's Degree in Interior Design from IADE,

Lisbon, and you later nurtured your education in Photography at the UniversitĂŠ Paris 8 Vincennes Saint-Denis, in Paris: how did those formative years influence your evolution as an artist? Moreover, how does your cultural substratum due to your Portuguese roots direct the trajectory of your current artistic research? Margarida Naves: Hello! I have started my artistic journey by liking to produce objects, and see them gaining shape as I designed them and could materialize in the physical form. As I am very attached to the space around me and its beauty, I followed my training with the




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interior/athmospheres design Master, so I could learn how to make this in a broader scale, and create spaces that could mirror my inner notion of beauty. Photography comes in the alignment with the drawing field, always present in my design practice, and with this medium I can better express what I envision, for its plasticity and capacity to merge with any other medium. Having studied Photography in Paris was a great opportunity to learn about the numerous capacities of this art form, as well as being in a city with so many inspiring surroundings and artists. Being portuguese does not reflect particularly in my work, or direct the trajectory of my visual research, as I portray it in a very personal way, and I am primarily interested in narrating my dreamy inner emotions. For this special edition of LandEscape we have selected All unfolds in grace and beauty a stimulating series that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. What has at once captured our attention of your work is the way it unveils the point of convergence between the reality from which you draw, and such transporting ethereal visual atmosphere, providing the viewers with such multilayered visual experience: when walking our readers through the genesis of All unfolds in grace and beauty

would you tell us something about your usual setup and process? Margarida Naves: This particular series was constructed from old images I did not relate to anymore, but still loved their ambience and composition. I decided to give them a different meaning and rhythm. So by using the gesture of ripping the paper and creating one image from two different photos, I found they dialogued in multiple layers giving place to the intangible space I always aim to achieve. My process is a continuous research, and it evolves from my daily practice. With their unique visual identity, your artworks challenges the viewers' perceptual parameters: we daresay that your artistic practice seems to aim to look inside of what appear to be seen, rather than its surface, providing the spectatorship with freedom to realize their own perception. Austrian Art historian Ernst Gombrich once remarked the importance of providing a space for the viewers to project onto, so that they can actively participate in the creation of the illusion: how important is for you to trigger the viewers' imagination in order to address them to elaborate personal interpretations? In particular, how open would you like your works to be understood?




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Margarida Naves: That is exactly what I am looking for in my work! My idea is to give complete freedom to the viewer to fully travel through the narrative I present, and be able to identify with it and mirror their personal experiences. I suggest a meaning given through a title and a visual composition with figurative, abstract color and black and white, and from there the viewer’s insight takes one’s direction. The openness of my narratives allows multiple understandings and I am interested in this plurality of meanings. The ambiguous visual quality of your artworks allows you to create emotional impact on the viewers: we have particularly appreciated the way they clearly show that vivacious tones are not strictly indespensable to create tension and dynamics. How does your own psychological make-up determine the nuances of tones that you decide to include in your artworks? Margarida Naves: I love to use tones close to the melancholic feelings, and I find myself using many times the same colors. I use blue, pink and violet the most, and maybe in this way I can find my portuguese roots connecting this melancholy to saudade. I prefer to use faded colors, for bright and saturated


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are too strong for what I want to say in images. As you have remarked in your artist's statement, your work is about creating images composed with poetry in everyday life sceneries, as in the interesting Idioglossia: how does your everyday life's experience fuel your creative process? Margarida Naves: I am fueled by all my surroundings, as daily images and sounds. I love to mix all the information I receive, and create layers of matter, as we can specifically see in Idioglossia. This word means “a language of one’s own, or and invented language”, and by this I mean to create an inner cosmos where all connects and mirrors my own emotions. Literature plays a major role to fuel my imaginary and will to experiment with my images over and over. The continuity of forms that pass from one image to the other creates an organic flow and rhythm like music, which is for me an imperative art form. A central aspect of your artistic research is focussed on the exploration of the relation between abstraction and daily life landscapes: how do you consider the relationship between the real and the imagined playing within your artistic practice? Margarida Naves: In the abstract we can find multiple meanings opposing to the real images that contain a singular one. I






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find this relation interesting while visually storytelling, for its extreme balance creates a singular substance between dream and reality. We have particularly appreciated the way your artworks shows balanced combination between subtle sense of geometry and abstract sensitiveness. New York City based artist Lydia Dona once stated that in order to make art today one has to reevaluate the conceptual language behind the mechanism of art making itself: Do you create your works gesturally, instinctively? Or do you methodically transpose geometric schemes? Margarida Naves: It is a balanced use of both: instinct and method. My work process takes a long time, for I experiment all the composition possibilities my intuition guides me to. The final result is a pure decision of intense analysis. As for geometry, the curve element is the one that most interests me while building a specific imagery, and other geometric shapes are added as visual equilibrium. French artist Edgar Degas, once said that “Art is not what you see, but what you make others see": how do you consider the nature of your relationship with your audience? By the way, as the move of Art from traditional gallery spaces, to street and especially to online platforms — as Instagram — increases, how would in your






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opinion change the relationship with a globalised audience? Margarida Naves: I consider the nature of the relationship with my audience is done in a very personal level, as I would like them to identify with my work, not giving a full narrative direction, but an invitation to create their own inner story. I don’t think Instagram is the best way to present my work, for I believe the photographic series get scattered and the content loses meaning. I like my work to be

presented as a whole, and my favorite platform is my personal website, although I do have an Instagram account for a fast paced general view of my work. We have really appreciated the multifaceted nature of your artistic research and before leaving this stimulating conversation we would like to thank you for chatting with us and for sharing your thoughts, Margarida. What projects are you currently working on, and


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what are some of the ideas that you hope to explore in the future? Margarida Naves: Thank you very much. At the moment I am working on a new series that I would like to edit in a black and white fanzine. It is a photographic diary about the void, silence and inner sceneries, and I use the metaphor of nature elements for the interpersonal relations in everyday life. Everyday life is my absolute favorite field to capture images, and create an intangible space feeling.

I love the photographic book art form, and in a near future I intend to publish more editions of my work. I have recently self edited a book from my series Times without number, and I find very inspiring to design from scratch the photobook as a whole, while containing a personal story made by unpublished images. An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Katherine Williams, curator landescape@europe.com


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LandEscape meets

Suzanne Gibbs Familiar images, objects and places are transformed into unbecoming surroundings. Regular urban structures acquire a monumental look and therefore become private landmarks of ambiguity. Every distraction is banished with the intention to arrive at a deceptively bare density. Sometimes, even the elements of solidity and liquidity are rendered in an unspecified manner. Space is undefined and all mediums are reduced to a very limited color scale and simple forms. My works reside on the borderline of description, leaving more space to the unseen rather to what is depicted. By dismantling certainties, I aim to evoke a sense of detachment, void and unfamiliarity.

An interview by Ralph Landau, curator and Katherine Williams, curator landescape@europe.com

Hello Suzanne and welcome to LandEscape. Before starting to elaborate about your artistic production we would like to invite our readers to visit https://www.artbysuzannebgibbs.com in order to get a wide idea about your mulifaceted artistic production, and we would start this interview with a couple of questions about your background. Over your formative years you have had the chance to study both in the United Kingdom and in the USA: how do these experiences influence your evolution as an artist? Moreover, how does your cultural substratum direct the trajectory of your current artistic research? Suzanne Gibbs: Thank you LandEscape for this opportunity to share my artistic experience and creative process. Although born in England, my burning desire to become an artist was ignited following my first painting commission (by my Art teacher at High School), in America. At that time, I was 17 years old and had gained a sponsorship to

live in Martinez California for a year with a host family and to attend and graduate from Alhambra High School. This wonderful opportunity has become the essence of whom I’ve become in both my formative years as a Director of Art in a Secondary School in England, to the freelance fine artist I am today. Inspired by my Californian teacher, Barbara Minneman, I taught for over 20 years at Gordon’s School, a secondary state boarding school in Surrey, England. The knowledge I had to impart and the practice I shared gave me the tools and experience to explore a variety of artistic techniques and processes in my own work. Over the years, I was able to buy land in Northern California (out in the wilderness) and build a second home to use as an artist’s retreat. Here I am inspired by the natural, wild beauty and immensely diverse environment of Shasta County. Back in England, I am excited and compelled to absorb the wealth of history, culture and the arts from the London Galleries, exhibition’s and museums. My work is therefore quite diverse and I enjoy exploring the abstract or surreal as much as the representational or figurative work I create.



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Start of the Fire The body of works that we have selected for this special edition of LandEscape and that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article was inspired by the devastating wildfires that raged across California last year, and what has at once captured our attention of your works is the way you sapiently captured beauty in natural environments, providing the viewers with such multilayered visual experience: when walking our readers through your usual setup and process, would you tell us what did direct you to focus an important part of your artistic practice on the theme of landscape?

Suzanne Gibbs: As mentioned earlier, I am very fortunate to spend time and own a home in Shasta County, situated in the beautiful forests and mountains of the Northern Californian landscape. However, because of the dry hot summers over the last 13 years I have seen and experienced the ever increasing wildfires that are of a consequence. Last summer, I almost lost my home along with those of close friends. That year 2018, the Californian wildfire season turned out to be the most destructive and deadliest wildfire season ever recorded in history. Tragically, it burnt an area of 174,000 acres in Shasta County. Consequently, the devastation and destruction of the breath taking landscape and


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picturesque environment was transformed. As an artist, I found it very moving and was compelled to urgently record and respond to it. I was really documenting the devastating event, like British artists such as the famous war artist, John Piper and my idol, JMW Turner. It so happens that I am also excited and enthused by my surroundings which are often the greatest inspiration for all artists. Some of my other landscape paintings have been inspired by not just Turner, but by John Martin and Constable’s turbulent skies, and the atmospheric landscapes of American artist Fredrick Erwin Church. We have really appreciated the vibrancy of thoughtful nuances that mark out your artworks, and we like the way they create tension and dynamics in Fire creeping and in Fire burning bright: how did you come about settling on your color palette? And how does your own psychological make-up determine the nuances of tones that you decide to include in your works in order to provide the viewers with such immersive visual experience? Suzanne Gibbs: The intense heat, haze and glow emitted by the wildfire gave me the exciting opportunity to mix a vibrant palette of red and yellow hues, often juxtaposed with the silhouettes of intense dark ash. I love to experiment with colour and one of my strengths and my focus as a teacher, was to pass on my knowledge and understanding of its power, persuasion, expression and symbolism. I believe the viewer’s initial response to any painting is an immediate reaction to its colour. Conversely, in my piece, Ash triptych, with the absence of colour, I have attempted to replace the sensual pleasure of colour with shape, tone and structure. To evoke the deepest feelings and fears of desolation, I used black, grey and white ash, forcing the viewer to remember that moment after the Carr fire, to reflect and respond to it personally and emotionally. I’ve always been a thinker and it’s not enough for me to create work that just copies and portrays. As in the famous quote by Jerzy Kosinski, the Polish American novelist, ‘The principles of true art are not to portray, but to provoke’.


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Fire burning bright


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My other artwork ranges from subtle hue transitions as in ‘cubist trees by creek’, where my intentions were to encourage the viewer to pause, before immersing themselves in a moment of consideration; to question what am I looking at, what can I actually see? The more representational response, or less stylistic, but expressive paintings of the world around me, are there to invite the spectator to join me in my visual experience. My more intense and exaggerated palette applied is reserved for the more surreal and imaginative pieces. These works, such as ‘Summer Apple Scrumping’ are creations from my subconscious, where memories of my past or childhood are revisited, allowing the odd self-indulgent moment. It's important to remark that you used the landscape and tree ash from the fire and mixed it into my oil paints to create textured, emotive and impactful paintings. New York City based artist Lydia Dona once stated that in order to make art today one has to revaluate the conceptual language behind the mechanism of art making itself: do you create your works gesturally, instinctively? Or do you methodically transpose geometric schemes? Suzanne Gibbs: I believe today it is true that artists are always looking for new and unusual ways to respond to the world around them, often working with a concept, rather than ‘the mechanism’ or practical skill of producing art. Artists have always explored new and innovative resources to work and experiment with and this is often due to having to improvise or by being inspired by a resource provided by nature, objects or the environment. In my case, it was the landscape of ash and there was plenty of it after the Carr fire, last year. The grey, monochromatic blanket of ash resting on the landscape was an eerie site. Despite the devastation and destruction, I found it extremely moving and very inspiring. Compelled to express it, I think you could say it was instinctively, that I then incorporated the ash into my paintings. I had never used this resource before, so the application of it became methodical as I experimented with mixing it into my oil paint as the




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ash fought to extinguish the vibrancy of colour. I began to apply it gesturally to express the wild, ferocious activity of the fire and the transcient textures that resulted. Your paintings reflect a sense of connection with your surroundings: how does your everyday life's experience fuel your creative process? Suzanne Gibbs: My sketchbook is like the addition of the modern phone; my personal way of recording and responding to life. As with most artists, drawing is often the beginning of my creative process. Life’s experiences, whether significant moments, events in the past or just every day; they are a part of whom we are. How we react or respond to them, is the significance and what matters. I like to believe as young as I can remember that misfortune, trauma, depression, poverty or loss were temporary and challenges to overcome. I have learnt this from experience. Inwardly, I am blessed with the ability to see the good, the positive and cyclic nature of our surroundings, possessions and life itself. From a literal point of view, as far back as I can remember, when I look at scenes, objects, and even people, I immediately see shape, proportion, colour and tone. It wasn’t until I became an art teacher, however, that I fully realised this. Even today, I find myself ‘air ‘drawing when I don’t have my sketchbook with me. Recently, I have become very fortunate to live and work in both England and Northern California. In England I am inspired, enthused and motivated by all the London galleries, exhibitions, its artistic culture, history and museums. In California I am compelled to respond, express and attempt to capture, the natural beauty of my surroundings, its awe inspiring wonder and soul. Sketches of people and scenes As you have remarked in your artist's statement, The Carr Fire brought about devastation and loss, but it also brought humanity together, inflicted challenge and change. It was responsible for so many stories and reports of heroic deeds, of a


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Whiskey town a light at night


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The Creek in Relief

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community’s strength, resilience, caring and charitable nature. Gabriel Orozco once stated, "artists's role differs depending on which part of the world they’re in": does your artistic research respond to a particular cultural moment? In particular, do you think that artists can raise awareness to an evergrowing audience on topical issues, as sustainability and environmentalism, in our globalised age? Suzanne Gibbs: I totally agree with Gabriel Orozco. From a superficial point of view, had I not been living in the area and experienced the Carr fire in Northern California last year, I would not have been compelled to create an exhibition on it. After the Carr fire, I couldn’t stop thinking about the devastation, the trauma and personal loss that people close to us were experiencing. I felt a desperate need to respond to it and to raise money for the local Red Cross. Wildfires are increasing in length and destruction. Although California fires are natural and many of its ecosystems evolved to burn frequently, however, according to the National Geographic, over the last 20 years the wildfires are significantly increasing in size due to climate change. This topical issue is definitely something that my artwork addresses and fortunately with the help of LandEscape, will become more accessible to a greater audience. Since time began artists, writers, philosophers and performing artists, despite repercussions, have taken a stand against injustice, oppression, political, religious and social conditions. For example Goya, Turner, Hogarth, The German Expressionists, to name a few. Unfortunately, not everywhere around the world respects freedom to expression and today there are many contemporary artists in exile as a consequence. Artists such as the Iranian artist and filmmaker, Shirin Nashat, the famous Chinese artist Aiwei Wei, Lebanese artist Mona Hatoum and Korean artist Sun Mu. With their unique visual identity, your artworks feature such a powerful combination between figurative reference with effective expressionistic


Green Trees diptych



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River Medway, UK

qualities, to challenge the viewers' perceptual parameters and inviting them to capture the hidden beauty in such torment and destruction: we daresay that your artistic practice seems to aim to look inside of what appear to be seen, rather than its surface, providing the spectatorship with freedom to realize their own perception. Austrian Art historian Ernst Gombrich once remarked the importance of providing a space for the viewers to project onto, so that they can actively participate in the creation of the illusion: how important is it for you to trigger the viewers' imagination in order to address them to

elaborate personal interpretations? In particular, how open would you like your works to be understood? Suzanne Gibbs: Although it’s extremely important to me to trigger the viewer’s imagination in all my artwork, some pieces obviously provide a greater freedom to actively participate in the creation of the illusion than others. For example, ‘Abstract Moment’ The Ash triptych, from the Carr fire exhibition, is more subtle but equally evokes different responses, depending on the viewer’s imagination. I would like to think my unique


Journey


Lightwater, Surrey UK




Gravesend


Fruit and Wine


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Summer Apple Scrumping

technique and the absence of colour allows for personal interpretations. When I applied the ash I had collected from around my property to my black canvases, I intentionally erased the ash, (using an eraser), to strip away at the painting. This was to give it form, structure, bone and shadow, as if I were revealing the black, resilient darkness of nature. The white ash I left on the surface, contrasts to highlight its beauty, fragility and innocence. The personal message I wanted viewers to consider was how our surroundings, possessions, nature and life itself is so temporary. I

want the viewer to understand that change can be cyclic and like the butterfly painting titled Rebirth, whether the viewer believes there is an end or not, we cannot escape the inevitable transformation of our personal existence. Over the years your artworks have been showcased in several occasions. French artist Edgar Degas, once said that “Art is not what you see, but what you make others see": how do you consider the nature of your relationship with your audience? By the way, as the move of Art from


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Abstract Moment

traditional gallery spaces, to street and especially to online platforms — as Instagram — increases, how would in your opinion change the relationship with a globalised audience? Suzanne Gibbs: Degas spoke wise words and I have often used that quote in the art room with my art students. However, I’d like to add that, depending on one’s interpretation of the word ‘see’, it’s important to also consider as an artist, how we can make others feel. This may be as subtle as evoking a mood, enticing a memory to encouraging an emotive response. Following my exhibition on at the moment, Assistant Curator,

Amanda Kramp wrote on a blog: ‘Suzanne has managed to capture the disastrous tragedy and transform it into a hauntingly beautiful tribute. The exhibition is a poignant testimonial to the devastation of the Carr fire, as well as the resilience, strength, and humanity that flooded in the wake of that tragedy.’ People who viewed the exhibition, responded with comments like, ‘The picture with Norm watching the fire unaware of what was coming broke my heart’, Bonny Mcconnell and the portrait of Lou White who stayed behind to fight the fire, trapped for 18 days, said he cries when he


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Autumnal Tree


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Journey

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Impending doom

Rebirth

looks at his portrait of distress and despair. Although these pieces can still be appreciated as images, they and the rest of the ash on canvas paintings need to be seen at first hand in order to appreciate the application of the ash, its multi layered surface and its texture. The scale of the paintings also add to their impact, which is impossible to experience, when viewing artwork in a magazine or online. My art students were often disappointed when they finally saw the Mona Lisa at the Louvre for the first time, merely because they expected it to be much larger. Some artworks depend on scale to create an impact, for example David Hockney’s exhibition, ‘The Bigger Picture’, Monet’s famous water lilies and the paintings of Rothko.

life. It reaches people who don’t have the time, practical or intellectual abilities to visit galleries. It can also break down the political, religious and social barriers. It can reach a much wider audience in a fraction of time. My feeling is if one does have the opportunity to view artwork live, it should be taken in order to fully appreciate its scale, texture and true colour.

What technology does do wonderfully well, however, is make art accessible to all walks of

All these visual elements are important parts of a painting. Some art installations and conceptual art depend on being viewed in a gallery. Duchamp’s inverted urinal, ‘fountain’ would not only lose its powerful message and meaning, but would have never inspired future installations or conceptual artwork, like Tracey Emin’s ‘Unmade Bed’, that totally relied on the Tate Modern’s environment for its impactful message.


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We have really appreciated the multifaceted nature of your artistic research and before leaving this stimulating conversation we would like to thank you for chatting with us and for sharing your thoughts, Suzanne. What projects are you currently working on, and what are some of the ideas that you hope to explore in the future? Suzanne Gibbs: Although I am focusing at the moment on publicizing my 3 month solo art exhibition (on the Carr Fire, which closes at the end of October), I have begun preparing for a piece that is closer to home. Very recently my sister was diagnosed with endometrial cancer and is undergoing chemotherapy. She has lost her hair, but is taking it well and has gladly agreed to be the focus of my next body of work. I will work from direct observation, from initial sketches and painted portraits to compose a final, impactful portrait. My intention is to find a way of using her hair in a creative, subtle way, incorporating it into a striking powerful piece. If I manage to succeed and attach a personal, yet universal message I will then enter it into the National BP Competition. I am also going to be working towards a solo 2 month Art Exhibition for the Bedford Gallery, at the Library in Walnut Creek, (CA USA) for 2020. The exhibition will focus on the effects of global warming; the increasing size and devastation of CA Wildfires. This is inspired by another wildfire, the Camp Fire, in Paradise, CA on Nov 8th last year. The Camp Fire was the deadliest and most destructive wildfire in California history. It is also the deadliest wildfire in the United States since the Cloquet fire in 1918 and is high on the list of the world's deadliest wildfires;

The purpose is once again to raise awareness and help donate money to the Red Cross Charity. This is following the great success of the current 3 month Carr Fire exhibition, where 50% of the sales are going to the Red Cross. I’ve currently sold 10 of the 15 paintings since it opened, with over 2 months still to go An interview by Ralph Landau, curator and Katherine Williams, curator landescape@europe.com


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Whiskeytown Lake, CA, USA


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LandEscape meets

Kayla Hunnicutt My process begins with the moment. The energy, the emotion, a thought or a message. A vision arises in my mind, then I take that image and convey it with acrylic paint on stretched canvas for a final piece that encapsulates everything from that instance. I use a technique I named fluid fractal where I manipulate the paint with breath, essentially breathing life into it. Fluid fractal is used as representation of energy just like vivid colors are influences to the emotion. There’s a deep, profound love of the universe and the intricacies within it that pushes me to create with a humanitarian intent. Art is meditation for myself and universal communication. Where words fail, art will prevail.

An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Melissa C. Hilborn, curator landescape@europe.com

Hello Kayla and welcome to LandEscape. Before starting to elaborate about your artistic production we would like to invite our readers to visit https://fromaquarianhands.wixsite.com/k aylahunnicutt in order to get a wide idea about your multifaceted artistic production, and we would start this interview with a couple of questions about your multifaceted background. You have a solid formal training and you

attended art classes in middle and high school: how did those formative years influence your evolution as an artist? Moreover, how does your cultural substratum direct the trajectory of your current artistic research? Kayla Hunnicutt: I wouldn’t say solid formal training but self-taught. Art classes in schools do a great job of introducing the basics in middle school while it’s more historically motivated in high school, however they lack allowing the full creative capabilities that an individual might possess due to the limitations of each project. Middle school we were



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Strength to Release

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literally shown the difference in lines alone, very elementary projects. High school was where I learned the different styles of art throughout the years and getting the opportunity to try out everything from pencil to paint and spray paint, even dabbled in ceramics. Ultimately, painting was not something I fully grasped until 2018 when a friend had gifted a pack of stretched canvases to me. The next day my fiancé bought me acrylic paint and Enter the Fractal was created shortly after. My cultural substratum is non-existent but did not leave me without a good foundation. I was built on good morals, a love for life and living beings and an understanding of different aspects of life by having been through impactful events. Loss is a hard one to get past, and I experienced it young with my family cat, my great grandfather then lastly my great grandmother, all by 5�� grade. That really started to transpire into something it shouldn’t have been at the time, which was a dark place called depression. My story continued and everything that happened beyond only proved my worth to press on and it built that desire to share a more inspirational view of this crazy journey we call life. I have a loving and supportive mother and father that both taught me so many lessons that positively impacted the person I have become. Because of them and other great influences in my life, it fanned the flames

of what was to be the drive towards my current artistic research. The body of works that we have selected for this special edition of LandEscape has at once impressed us of for the way your insightful exploration of the tension between figurative subjects and such compelling dreamlike atmosphere, as you did in the interesting Strength to Release and Feeling Blue, that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article: when walking our readers through your usual setup and process, would you tell us how do you usually develop the initial ideas for your artworks? Kayla Hunnicutt: Well, back in 2014, I started my own study of the metaphysical, chakras and the energy which encompasses everything around us and I wanted to share the vision there’s more to life than meets the eye. Through lots of meditation and self-exploration I realized the potential of the validity in what I was reading. Putting it to use, I balanced my chakras and opened my third eye, allowing me to explore a realm beyond only what is seen. For Feeling Blue I envisioned a common scene, a basic cityscape, and I added my own abstraction to the moon as a portrayal of the energy emitted. See in the light, feel in the night. Strength to Release was a lighthearted, fun image as a whole, but, more intricately was allegorically


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Feeling Blue

Mirage

influenced. The background sets the setting, the tree is growth, the elephant is strength and the red balloon represents the angst we as humans have. In this instance the balloon is hate, anger, past regrets that hang around that we don’t let get too far. It’s easier to be angry than to be at peace with things. What we don’t see is that we get further from growth when we refuse to let it go.

and starting with yourself, the world could transpire into something greater, think Lumen Octave.

I’m driven by enlightenment and humanitarian views. Every individual has the power to make themselves better,

Meticulously refinished in their details, your artworks has struck us for the way you sapiently conveyed effective combination between spontaneity and with such unique rigorous aesthetics. New York City based artist Lydia Dona once stated that in order to make art today one has to reevaluate the conceptual language behind the mechanism of art making itself: do you create your works gesturally,


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Cityscape


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Gift of Tears

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Dance

All Seeing Tree 2

instinctively? Or do you methodically transpose geometric schemes?

most of my abstract works, while the more surreal imagery is almost like a premonition. I see it in my head and reconstruct it directly to canvas. Pre drawing my paintings is more of a distraction and is just something I won’t do. The shapes are much more alive when each stroke of the brush slowly sews it all together. The end result can sometimes even be a surprise to me, that’s why most of my paintings are named after completion. My art is spontaneous.

Kayla Hunnicutt: Instinctively, no doubt. For example, Clouds on a String was thought up when I saw a cloud that looked like a bunny and somehow combined it with the song World on a String by Frank Sinatra. I thought, wouldn’t it be cool to have clouds as kites? To be able to hold on to something that’s so distant, but still in your control? It’s not possible, but that’s what makes it possible in art. Most paintings were a spur of the moment, like

We have really appreciated the vibrancy


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of thoughtful nuances that mark out your paintings, and we like the way you sapiently create tension and dynamics in Cityscape and Mirage: how did you come about settling on your color palette? And how does your own psychological make-up determine the nuances of tones that you decide to include in a specific artwork and in particular, how do you develop your textures? Kayla Hunnicutt: The color palette was determined by its representation. The fun of teal, the life of yellow, the grounded brown. Cityscape was maneuvering of paint with quick strokes of a palette knife. Mirage was slightly Salvador Dali inspired with the desert setting being the most influential for the color choice. Red has a sense of mystery and intrigue while the yellows and the browns keep it natural and real. When picking color palettes it’s accomplished by feeling. Understanding the story behind what I’m painting as well as feeling what the story tells. It’s a very intimate experience to live the painting before it’s painted. Psychologically, it’s known that colors can influence a person’s mood and by tuning that in, emotion is direct and prominent. Acrylic paint has an array of manipulations that can be used for actual texture, like building paint up


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Fractal Flowers


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The Eye in the Hand

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with a palette knife. When what is being painted, like the hollow figure in Mirage, it resembles wood because of the multiple lines that make up the different elevations of the bark, to create the look of wood texture. The flying eyeballs are much more blended so as to come across smooth. Cityscape was created to get the sharp angles and lines as well as the scattered blending and layering so as to create a choppy and fast paced appearance. With its powerful narrative drive, your style is both figurative and rich of surrealistic atmosphere, that marks out Gift of Tears, providing it with recognizable identity: how do you consider the relationship between the real and the imagined playing within your artistic practice? Kayla Hunnicutt: What’s real is real but what’s unreal is still real, just unseen. Gift of Tears was a zodiac painting to start. The purple color on monochrome with the face crying life as you can see for the trees in the distance. Gift of Tears was Aquarius, the water bearer. From the Aquarians gift of water comes life. It could also be interpreted to represent the emptiness we experience in our sorrow. Defining the “real” as anything that all individuals perceive and the unreal as that that isn’t, to me it’s all real. It’s showcasing imagery in a fun and interesting angle so as to share an


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enlightened vision. Combining life experience with abstract thinking is an opportunity to realize that we can’t see everything, that’s why it’s interpretations. The other aspect of merging the real with the unreal is to provoke viewers to question it. Everybody should question everything, that’s how we learn and grow and truly learn to encapsulate the full life experience. With its unique visual identity, Fractal Flowers challenges the viewers' perceptual parameters, inviting your audience to discern and interpret. In this sense, we daresay that your artistic practice seems to aim to look inside of what appear to be seen, rather than its surface, providing the spectatorship with freedom to realize their own perception. Austrian Art historian Ernst Gombrich once remarked the importance of providing a space for the viewers to project onto, so that they can actively participate in the creation of the illusion: how important is it for you to trigger the viewers' imagination in order to address them to elaborate personal interpretations? In particular, how open would you like your works to be understood? Kayla Hunnicutt: I agree with Gombrich in that statement. Having space for viewer projection and interpretations is as much fun as it is important. When creating Fractal Flowers I was barely even using

brushes yet, it was actually the second painting I had completed. The joy of designing on a whim, this painting opened my eyes to that notion that this could be looked at in so many ways and that made it even more interesting to me. It’s very important to have that room for interpreting, otherwise it loses that appeal and desire to connect with it. It’s exciting as a viewer too, to look upon a masterpiece and almost start a hidden object game. Imagination should be practiced by every being, it opens a lot of doors when you can allow yourself to branch out from the mundane. Art is to be shared and cherished by more than just the individual creating it. Imagery itself is powerful and leaving room for interpretation is a top must when spreading a little light is the least you’d like to accomplish. Particularly, I’d hope my works are viewed openly. It’s what connects myself to the real world and the world to me, in a way. We have appreciated the way you develop the expressive potential of symbols, as the eyes that you included in Waterfall, All Seeing Tree, Third Eye and The Eye in the Hand: how important do symbols and metaphors play in your artistic research? In particular, how important is it for you to create artworks rich of allegorical qualities? Kayla Hunnicutt: My direction in my artistic research is focused on strong use


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Waterfall


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Third Eye Chakra

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Touch of Modern


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of symbolism and metaphors. Both offer a more powerful view into reality that words struggle to convey. I find myself to be a more visual individual so sharing my creative imagination, theories and beliefs is leading aim. They’re universally translated as well as multi-interpretable. Eyes are among my favorite symbols to use. They’re the windows to the soul, the beholder of beauty. They also represent intelligence, truth, clairvoyance, intuition, consciousness, sight, observation and much more. The knowledge of metaphors and symbolisms in literature comes from being an avid reader as well as my awesome teacher who I had as an advanced English teacher in 10�� grade. The variety of materials she had us read as well as the way she engaged the class to understand the depth of what we were reading has immensely influenced my ability to project that in my paintings. The most symbolic story I remember reading was “A Perfect Day for Bananafish” by J.D. Salinger. The description of the room, the names of the characters and the interaction involved in the story were all symbolic. It made the story more emotional and memorable, much like the purpose of symbols and metaphors when introduced in art. Allegory is also a huge factor, for the soul intent of enlightening the world, as crazy as that sounds. There’s a bigger

picture out there that is refused to be seen because the limitations of the human mind. It’s by expanding and practicing to use our imaginations that we can more abstractly dissect everything to a surreal level. It encourages more insightful ideas that can transform a small idea into a major innovation or a new lead into research. Allegorical painting has been the intent of my paintings before I had the ability to create it. Self- taught free form painting is a constant lesson, but with each passing painting completed, hidden messages will remain to be a common trend. You also draw from universal imagery and another interesting works of yours that has particularly impressed us is entitled Bob Marley Tribute: how do your memories and your everyday life's experience fuel your creative process? Kayla Hunnicutt: Life is a roller coaster but being in the moment to appreciate the ups and experience the downs is what grows the understanding of being alive. I capture that and transform these times as stories or realizations. After these incidences happen and remain as memories, we continue our paths and mature along the way so we can reflect and interject new meanings and lessons from those times that you may have not noticed before. It’s what keeps us on track to becoming the best version of


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Pyramid




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Bob Marley Tribute

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ourselves. Directing that to my creative process, it’s much like parents not wanting their children to make the same mistakes they did. In fueling my process, I did a lot of self-exploration and realization that could come to assist somebody else dealing with a similar situation. It’s the humanitarian and counselor in me that dreams of making that impact to help. New experiences in everyday life is still viewed at this mental state but could encourage even more reflection in the future. For now, expressing the values and beliefs that I’ve come to understand from past and present will push me further to make impactful art. How do you consider the nature of your relationship with your audience? By the way, as the move of Art from traditional gallery spaces, to street and especially to online platforms — as Instagram https://www.instagram.com/fromaquari anhands — increases, how would in your opinion change the relationship with a globalized audience? Kayla Hunnicutt: The nature of my relationship with my audience is depending on which audience. Having art sales and getting to meet and converse with people that appreciate what I’m trying to accomplish has been very rewarding and reaffirming. My audience on either Instagram or Facebook is relatively lacking, but still

noticed. The beautiful thing about the social media platforms is it can get far fast, which in art is a good thing. It also allows variety. There’s several artists on Instagram that I follow for the sheer joy of seeing their perspectives of life and how they recreate it. A more globalized audience could increase the relationship between artist and audience tremendously for interaction and becoming more personable. We have really appreciated the multifaceted nature of your artistic research and before leaving this stimulating conversation we would like to thank you for chatting with us and for sharing your thoughts, Kayla. What projects are you currently working on, and what are some of the ideas that you hope to explore in the future? Kayla Hunnicutt: Thank you so much for having me. This has been an inspiring conversation. Currently I have a list of ideas that I’m still in the process of, a strong allegorical one is my next debut. I’m excited to play around with monochrome and color splash designs in the future as well and continue to transcend viewers beyond the realm of the imaginable. Stay tuned! An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Melissa C. Hilborn, curator landescape@europe.com


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