FOR MY CURRENT WORK, PLEASE GO TO:
MULTI-PANEL GEOMETRIC PAINTINGS:
I don’t know if Donald Judd would have liked my paintings, but his installation of 100 milled aluminum boxes in Marfa, Texas, provided the jumping-off point for my current work. Seeing Judd’s boxes made me aware of my own fascination with things that are almost the same but not quite—aspens, waves, New Mexico flat-bottomed clouds.
In each series of oil-painted panels, I repeat the ... Read More
same geometric composition, with small changes in color and shape, as many as 25 times. (A spreadsheet ensures that I never reuse the same design.) I draw lines without ruler or tape to preserve the evidence of a human hand. The time I spent in West Africa as a Peace Corps volunteer influences my use of color and visual polyrhythms.
I sometimes think of my work as handmade minimalism, lyrical minimalism, even Fauvist minimalism.
In making monotypes, I use brayers and my hands, rather than a press, to transfer ink from the plate to the paper, and I work without preconceived ideas. A series of monotypes usually begins with a color rather than a form.
Printing by hand is somewhat unpredictable, introducing a playful element of chance. The process also lets me draw in unique ways: by scratching into the ink on the plate, by putting the paper face down on the plate and drawing on the back, by drawing with the edge of the brayer, and even by scratching directly into the ink on the print.
The small size of my monotypes is important to me—they are like little jeweled worlds I can lose myself in.
TAI CHI AND LANDSCAPE DRAWINGS:
Since 2001, I have been working on a series of abstract ink drawings that investigate motion, stillness, and presence. Some were done while watching people practice tai chi or qi gong; others were created outside in the landscape. This work, drawn either with a bamboo pen and “walnut ink” or with black and brown acrylic ink, originally developed out of my difficulties in learning tai chi. Because I see best when I’m drawing, I started drawing the advanced class.
I quickly became enthralled by questions arising out of this process: What is presence in motion? Can the artist be present to another’s movements through a process of sensory empathy? How does that empathy relate to the material realm of paper, pen, and ink?
Later it occurred to me to take my drawing process out into the landscape, and I found myself with many of the same questions: Is there an empathy that can help me experience the way a Port Orford cedar is in the world? The tree is itself, in movement or stillness—I observe—marks are made on paper. When viewers of the drawing look at those marks in the absence of artist and tree, what happens?
FOR CURRENT INFORMATION, GO TO WWW.DANIELLESHELLEY.COM
•David Richard Contemporary, Santa Fe, New Mexico
•David Richard Contemporary, Santa Fe, New Mexico, "Earth Measure Blues"
•516 ARTS, Albuquerque, New Mexico, "New Mexico Showcase"
•Art Santa Fe, "Project Space: Lady Minimalists Tea Society"
•Fisher Press, Santa Fe, New Mexico, Earth Measure Blues
•New Concept Gallery, Santa Fe, New Mexico, Catalyst
•Center for Contemporary Arts (CCA), Santa Fe, New Mexico, 18 Days
•Brooklyn Art Library, New York, New York, The Sketchbook Project
•Siena Art Institute, Siena, Italy, Drawing Conections
•Linda Durham Contemporary Art, Santa Fe, New Mexico, The ... Read More
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