In graduate school I was intrigued by the Dada art movement in the early 1900s. Artists were responding to a world in turmoil by questioning the very definition of art and its purpose in society. A variety of non-traditional styles of art emerged, primarily collage as an art form. I enjoy witnessing these breakthroughs of the status quo in history. It challenges everyone involved to wonder about the big picture of what art is and can be.
Stewing on this, I wanted to challenge my traditional realistic drawing training by pushing the boundaries of what a “drawing” is.
I started by drawing on paper (art on the left) with birds in my neighborhood as the inspiration. These birds are a daily reminder of connection to the earth as they fly silently in the background of our lives. I scanned that completed drawing into my computer. Flipping through my collections of antique maps and textbooks I looked for images that would enhance the drawing and the meaning of “connection”. This process sometimes involved photography of my local landscape, scanned print images from my vintage book and magazine collection, or a collage of maps and charts. After composing one image of these various pieces in Photoshop, I created a print of that image on a wood panel (image transfer print). The resulting mixed media piece (art on the right) has texture added to the surface with modeling paste and a glossy finish with epoxy resin.