Surface is an important consideration in my work, regardless of the medium. In the Lost & Found series of paintings on paper, I challenged myself to make surfaces that are playfully engaging but also visually intricate.
For some time I have been using dripped paint to create organic, non-mechanical lines that still read as straight. The entire underlying structure of these pieces is developed by dripping layers of acrylic ink over masking film. Each layer of drips is perpendicular to the previous one, producing a woven effect. After the masking is removed, I then add more layers of geometric shapes in graphite, colored pencil, and metal leaf. Strips of irregular angular shapes are cut out of the paper to reveal shiny textured paint underneath.
(See a video of the painting process from start to finish here: http://youtu.be/NzFZrFxwYKs )
In my carved acrylic panel paintings, I create the rich interplay of textures by repeatedly adding and removing acrylic paint and other materials – alternately spackling, stamping, spattering, dripping, sanding, carving, scratching, scraping. I challenge myself to make the richness visual as well as tactile. I want every element to invite a second look, and a third, and a fourth.
The Reservoir series is modular: the 24 vibrantly colored panels have no “correct” orientation and can be hung from any side to create multiple arrangements. The repeating elements in the series are strategically combined so that each panel is unique, yet will also interact successfully with the other panels in numerous ways. I experience the series as a big, beautiful, complex puzzle. Another body of work is comprised of rubbings made from the surface of my Reservoir paintings. To make the rubbings, I tape polypropylene sheets (Yupo) to the surfaces of the panel paintings and then go over the surface with wax pastels to bring out the underlying texture (remember making leaf rubbings in school?). I apply two to four layers of wax pastel in different colors, and also mask out shapes between layers to create additional color interactions. This process has become a fruitful way for me to rediscover the surface texture of the paintings; the rubbings reveal lines and textures that are less obvious in the works from which they are made. I am exploring this technique further in a series of rubbings made from created textures rather than from existing paintings.
– Cindy Morefield