Lines and boundaries
Art represents meaning to me. In art I find pure and untainted purpose. I love how in the end, art has no practical value, yet there is no doubt of the immense value and reason-to-exist it possesses. I find that many philosophies or ideas that I have struggled to articulate within life, come out effortlessly in art and help me learn more about life and what I value in it. Furthermore, I love how visual art defies the sometimes stifling and independent nature of words it possesses a fluid interconnectedness of meaning that draws all of the elements together. And finally, I like the spontaneous and thoughtless way it presents itself through me, it is a side of myself that is so mysterious and chaotic.
I have always loved art, but it was only after college when I joined an artist guild in Manitou Springs in Colorado that I knew art would be a lifelong pursuit for me. I found a fascinating depth in everyone around me, and such an independent passion to create. I found a simplicity and a certainty that is so rare in life.
Natural beauty, infinite natural beauty. Nothing inspires me more than the awe and selflessness I feel in the presence of that which is so beyond me. One of my favorite quotes is by Edward Abbey when he describes the beauty of a sunset as that which makes self-pity impossible. Beauty lets me transcend my emotions and the cloudiness of everyday life, and in it I feel a very urgent need to express.
Oil paint has a wonderful playful feel to it. It doesnt dry quick at all, and it feels like oily clay. I love mixing paint and watching all the pigments swirl into each other, amalgamating into a completely different color. And that paint will still be workable for days. I love the challenge of the blank and square canvas, and that it can only be completed one brush-stroke at a time. Because of the infinite steps that goes into its creation, a painting always evolves and changes as it is completed. Every element bounces around and plays off others, creating a whole that is either pleasing, or it is not. That is the beauty and the challenge.
I focus on landscape paintings in a style that I consider abstract landscapes. By this I mean I look at shapes and colors that I see in nature, rather than the literal object or scene in front of me. My style emphasizes the line and boundary. Between two objects or shapes resides an incredible tension and purpose, which I highlight and bring out in my paintings. The line also represents flow and movement. I have always been fascinated by the movement and direction that shapes imply. Why is it? Why does this shape move so well into the sky? And how can I bring out this idea or perception within the confines of the square of my canvas? Many have compared my art to Asian aesthetics, a comment I am flattered by. Perhaps this is because I lived in Japan for eight months. Perhaps it is because of the admiration I have for the worship of natural imperfections found within Asian art.
I would meet Georgia OKeefe or Pablo Picasso. OKeefe because I found that she led a remarkably independent and courageous life. I love the transition she made after her husband, Alfred Stiegletz, died. She moved to New Mexico and found a beauty there, in its colors and in the sky. That was totally unique for the time. And therefore she communicated that beauty through all her courage and perseverance. I would meet Picasso because of the incredible tenacity that he possessed. He produced an incredible amount of artwork in his life, something like one piece every three days for 80 years. And I love that he said that the reason he died so old and healthy (in his 90s) was that he felt a mission and need to explore art more … a self-possessed and independent spirit and passion.
No, unfortunately much of my favorite art is still beyond my means to afford.
In addition to Loaded Joes, I display my artwork every Sunday at Vail Farmers Market in Vail Village. I sell my work through my Web site, http://www.juniperbrushworks.com. In addition, I sell commissions for original artwork.