Sarah Nind

 

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ARTIST'S STATEMENT:  Excerpts on Production Methodologies 

Formally, my art production has employed oil painting with photographic processes in the production of a distinct body of work.  The resulting images exhibit characteristics of photography as an emotive and poetic medium  -- a recording device of the 'real'.  At the same time, imagery is transformed through the integration of paint.  This painted surface, with its ability to transcend the literal description, is addressed as a dimension to express and record emotional states and subjective memory.

Metaphorically, I see my use of painting as being representative of the interior / emotional body, while the photograph speaks of the physical / exterior body.  The hand, as mediator to the act of painting, can be seen as a metaphor for the sensual body, while the traces of photography are the tools by which the conscious body finds expression in the outer world.  By using photographs and by desiring to paint them, I am breathing life back into these images -- I am giving back to memories of time and place the aura and mystery that has been lost in the photograph.  Perhaps my desire to paint my photographs is actually a desire to authenticate or make unique a world that is fragmented and overexposed in the photographic image.

Thematically, my work is the telling stories.  These stories are not literal or linear in structure, but are constructed from fragmented and repetitive pieces, and represent a narrative of time and place.  Photographic images used in my work are fragments from a personal history, and represent a collection of memory and memorabilia.  The work attempts to question how these histories and images live in our conscious and unconscious memories and affect our ways of seeing and perception of reality.  Rather than being a dramatic narrative, my work questions history, the construction of time as a lineal process, and the distinction between the real and the virtual.

My current body of work, paysages fragiles”, addresses the paradigm of real and imagined through pictorial concepts of space / landscape.  At the same time, this new work extends the formal vocabulary of my art practice.  Through the exploration of painting and photo-based processes in relationship to digital technologies, paysages fragiles” aims to investigate the edges and interaction between traditional and contemporary means of visual creative expression.  The overall intent is to develop an individual sensibility regarding material application and process, and through experimentation of structures to speculate on the potential of image making and its conventions.

The use of landscape elements, at once literal and fictional, is a thematic preoccupation that can be seen running through my past and current art practice.  paysages fragiles addresses this theme through exploring the idea of the romantic / paradisal landscape and its relationship to the urban scape of the contemporary world.  Through the themes of environment and architectural space, I desire to re-trace, re-write, re-know, and ultimately re-claim the mnemonic traces of memory that define our understanding of place.  In exploring memory of place, the idea of "landscape" can be seen as an ongoing dialogue between the interior and the exterior, the private and the public, the imagined and the real, the poetic and the
profane.

Loosely translated, “paysages fragiles” alludes to the idea of fragile landscapes.  The work was conceptualized as the meeting point of the photograph, environmental issues raised by the image, and the subjectivity of painting.  The images are both harmonious and disturbing. A disquieting emotional response is evoked by the dichotomy between the memory and projected imagination of place, and the actuality of reality of place.  The intention is to develop work, as a visual narrative, that explores the territory between the virtual and the real. The idea of landscape, as seen in my work, can be understood as an ongoing dialogue between the interior and the exterior, the private and the public, the poetic and the profane, the traditional and the contemporary.