"I maintain an old-fashioned affair with paint. Oil paint. In the liminal space between representation and abstraction, I paint to know, to understand, to dissolve dualities and ease tensions."
"No longer able to resist the poetic call of the massive white space before me I asked, “What do you want from me?”
What are your sources of inspiration?
Life on the Ridge with my husband and our dogs is the fundamental source of inspiration in my work.
Colour, light, and air, the majesty and vulnerability of trees, and the inexorable return of the seasons.
Books. Poems. Politics. Food, philosophy, flowers, friends and the art of others inspire me. As do landscape and memory, love and longing, and the quest to belong. The sheer act of painting and the overwhelming privilege I feel for being able to do this work.
What are you passionate about?
Recreating my Italian heritage in art, food, friends and family.
Tell us the back-story of some of your projects.
January, the holidays behind us I traded my kitchen studio for my painting studio. No longer able to resist the poetic call of the 6+meter walls that frame my workspace I prepared a 244 X 188cm canvas. Looking up at the massive white space before me I asked, “What do you want from me?”
As is my practice, I looked out the window and loaded my brushes. About five hours later Winter Sky 1 was well underway. At about 25cm from the bottom of the canvas, an ache in my back awakened me from my reverie. Like “wax on, wax off” in the Karate Kid (1984) of my generation, it took another two and a half weeks of “paint on, paint off” for me to ground the sky and call the painting finished. Winter Sky 1 hangs in the Law Faculty at the University of New Brunswick.
"Think Plato and his desire to banish the poets. That sentiment is alive and well. It’s why the arts continue to be under attack in schools."
How do you want your art to affect the viewer?
In December of last year, we drove the length of I-95 from New Brunswick, Canada to Miami, Florida to participate in Miami Art Week. I debated whether or not such a venue was right for my work. As this was a once in a lifetime experience I decided to go for it and build my corner within the cacophony that is Miami art week in the most Zen-like way I could, where visitors could transition into the space and breathe. Fortunately faith won over doubt and my hunches proved true. To a person, viewers in a range of languages and abilities explained how in the presence of my work they were compelled to slow down. They could take their rest. They could contemplate the landscapes of their lives and their place in them.
"All things are meltable, and replaceable.
Not at this moment, but soon enough, we are lambs and we are leaves, and we are stars, and the shining, mysterious pond water itself." - Mary Oliver
Pixelated images appear in nanoseconds. Superhuman art installations challenge market economies. Still, I maintain an old-fashioned affair with oil paint. Drawn from traditions of the past, yet wholly rooted in the present, I intend for my paintings to relieve us from the non-stop visual onslaught of contemporary life.
Love, longing, and the fluidity of time shape the poetic landscapes I make. So too, my 35-year exploration of working with a limited colourist palette. A student of the ephemeral; of truth and beauty, of light and place and home I paint to remember, to belong, to understand - to dissolve dualities and ease tensions.
For more information: www.jenniferpazienza.com