ARTisSpectrum | Volume 29 |
love making paintings that create an atmosphere in which
the viewer’s eyes are continuously moving around,” says
Olivia Kapoor
, and indeed she creates works whose dynamic
compositions, bright colors and varied textures encourage
that motion. The artist, who describes her works as futuristic
and abstract, gives her images an otherworldly air, with
dark backgrounds lending an air of mystery to the vibrantly
colored figures that take center stage. Working with acrylics
on canvas, she lets the paint take on a life of its own. Vigorous
brushstrokes play off against subtly modulated fields of color
in just one of the sets of contrasts that characterize her works.
Kapoor’s artworks present an appealing balance of freedom
and order. Spontaneous, freely drawn images are placed
next to rigorously geometrical patterns, and the back-and-
forth between those styles accounts for much of the energy
in her paintings. But even that energy is part of a contrast.
“My technique,” she notes, “is very relaxed and meditative.”
Citing such artists as Van Gogh, Dali and Monet as influences,
Kapoor explains that her primary goal is to communicate her
vision to the viewer. “The great thing about the end result,” she says, “is that it is able to speak for itself, tell a story.”
Oasis Acrylic on Canvas 48” x 48”
Olivia Kapoor
onna Shaffer
’s nimble ink paintings are nature studies unlike
any other: a new genre that mixes precision with the freedom of
flowing liquid. Shaffer builds her forms out of balanced washes and
bright, saturated bursts of color which are expertly organized but still
bend and bleed when they need to. The rush of a current of water,
the surprise of a new flower petal, and the delicacy of a single leaf
all appear with the same tangibility. Subtle variations in line and an
array of forms keep the composition moving and tense. Opacity and
transparency intertwine to create incredibly vivid, believable textures
— while at the same time making no attempt at photorealism.
Instead, Shaffer’s work traffics in the heightened and the surrealistic,
with a certain stream of consciousness aesthetic that guides the viewer
through the commotion and beauty of the wild world. Shaffer calls
herself an “abstract naturalist artist,” seeking her own interpretation of
Donna Shaffer was born in California and has exhibited throughout
New England and Pennsylvania. She is a sculptor as well as a painter,
using a variety of found natural materials including branches, clay,
stones, glass, and roots.
Nebuli Ink & Brush on Paper 36” x 24”
Donna Shaffer
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