This was the poster/bookmark I designed for my final senior art show at the University of Virginia, signaling my successful double major in nursing and art.
My artist's statement.
There was a fantastic turnout for the entire duration of the show! What a wonderful experience! The following are up-close views of the individual pieces:
Post-it abstract: Sold
This was a study for another large piece in my show, of a chalkboard with post-it notes stuck to it. I really enjoy incorporating abstracts into very technical, realistic work. This particular abstract was based off of some of the paint-splattered surfaces I have come across during my time in the UVA art studios.
Creation: acrylic, Sold
This was a fun piece, of a slug creating a slime trail out of which life-forms begin to arise. I would still like to do some more work with it, but this is essentially the idea.
This is based on one of my dreams likely inspired by a quote from the painter Francis Bacon who had an overriding preoccupation with what he liked to call "the brutality of fact." He said, "I would like my pictures to look as if a human being had passed between them, like a snail leaving a trail of the human presence and memory trace of past events."
One bit of fun I had while creating this piece was of using high gloss acrylic gel only on the slug/slime trail, which is most evident as the viewer sees the painting from the side:
Still life of bust and frame: oil, NFS
This was a study I did two years ago of a plastic white bust in the UVA art studio along with a conglomeration of various frames and items typically found in the student's studio work. I juxtaposed the bust almost into the frame, as though I was envisioning it becoming part of a painting as I painted it. In the back wall is the bottom of a poster of Monet's famous "La Promenade, la femme à l'ombrelle."
This is a portrait of a surprised, but still altogether pleased, subject as an abstract painting occurs over his face. I enjoyed studying how the actual colors of the abstract changed as they turned the corners of forms and blended into the shadows of his face.
A study of the ear in two forms of media, both emerging from rocks.
An oil portrait I painted during my first year of college. I tried to capture my gregarious, red-headed friend's wiley sense of humor and zest for life. I also enjoyed exploring the blueish-green tonalities of his fair skin.
Self portrait: acrylic, NFS
A self portrait painted during an especially stressful time of both my academic and personal life. At this time, I was taking 21 credits during that time in my efforts to double major, meaning that I was frequently only sleeping between classes.
Malformation: acrylic on canvas
This painting was based on a dream I had: of the stripes of a watermelon receding to form the land masses of the earth, while cracking open to reveal a drippy, eyeless, watermelon bird. Before painting this, I studied several examples of chicks in the process of newly hatching from eggs. In this state, they often seem glutinous and malformed, with their legs contorted in a seemingly anguishing position.
Wilderness: acrylic on masonite
This is an image of a bald man pushing the skin of his head together with his fingers until it seems to represent a brain. The intwining pattern of his fingers are echoed by the interweaving vines that begin to choke the scenic landscape until it blends into/becomes part of the man himself.
Nathaniel: Acrylic and oil on masonite, NFS
This large piece is perhaps the most technically advanced piece I have ever attempted. It is a trompe l'oeile style painting of a chalkboard with paintings of post-it notes stuck to the "frame." Everything is painted -including the "chalk drawing" portrait. I painted on the convincingly realistic (but painted) post-its, in his handwriting, a convincingly realistic inequality.
Fleeting: Acrylic on wood
I painted this piece during that same stressful time I referenced earlier. I had a wonderful time apple-picking on a beautiful mountain a few weeks prior. I ate all of the apples except for one, which I kept on my desk as a reminder of a happy memory. Needless to say, it stayed there for a bit too long. Eventually I moved it to a model of a skeleton hand that I have, and painted it every few days as the life seemingly began to be sucked out before my eyes.
My Safe Place: Acrylic on masonite, Sold
I have begun practicing meditation during these last few semesters of nursing school. Unless you are careful, 12 hours working in the ER can cause you to bring home the stress of traumatic scenes experienced throughout the day. When the world and everything is dark around you, we can always reach into that place inside ourselves that gives us strength and helps us move throughout the day.
Lightswitch: oil on canvas
During my second year of college, I decided to paint a lightswitch inside of a room with extremely worn walls. I will post a better picture, showing more of the texture of the wall that I tried to replicate including the push-pin holes and writing obscured under many caked layers of paint. The writing on the wall was illegible, and I painted this quite late throughout one night, so I can't remember what I wrote. It was neat to hang this painting on the walls of the room in which I painted it, as it matched perfectly.