I wonder if this will kill me

twilight flyer

I have a new collection of paintings up at Twilight Gallery in West Seattle! Opening night is Friday, Oct 2nd, from 6-9pm and the show will be up until October 31.

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I was in a car accident two years ago. I keep thinking back to it, only seeing it a split second before it happened. Disbelief. No fear, just surprise. I hit the breaks and closed my eyes and let it happen. Force. Noise. I thought,

wow.

I wonder if this will kill me…

I did not see that coming…

huh.

When I came to I was afraid to move. I wasn’t sure if I would be able to. I couldn’t see anything because the car was full of dust from the airbags. After a bit I moved my head first, slowly, side to side. I didn’t feel pain, which freaked me out. I moved my fingers and toes. Disbelief again. I started to hurt once I got out of the car. Then more in the ER. And for a brief bit I couldn’t read, or make words come out of my mouth in the correct order. I just wanted to go home.

I broke my collarbone and got to experience the joy that is whiplash. “Whiplash” sounds so benign, right? I thought so. Sounds cute, even.

Death’s been on my mind. I’ve been dreaming about it, always thinking, “huh, I thought it would be more painful. This really isn’t so bad.” But the crash didn’t kill me; it wasn’t even that serious. And it wasn’t painless. Physical therapy hurt. My neck is still recovering. Sometimes, when I lay really still, mostly in the mornings when I’m still in bed and just barely awake, I can’t feel it at all. And I lay there, curled up, feeling what it’s like to be in this body. I always liked sleeping in, but had never appreciated it this much.

It occurs to me that there are emotional crashes, and those can also stick you with whiplash. I feel residual sadness, and like with my physical injury I don’t do my exercises – even though I should, cuz it hurts. So this art is my way of tugging at old wounds, stretching out and gnawing over old heartbreak and disappointment, using vague images of my body as the language. The materials are simple, and straightforward: one color of oil paint on bleak birch panels. I’m trying to create a portrait of longing, of a fleeting, anonymous stillness. I am remembering sadness.

For three of these paintings I used a model other than myself: the beautiful Justyn Rebecca, an incredible photographer currently based in New Zealand (Muse, Handful, Curl 2).

Cover

“Cover” 30×30,” oil on wood panel

Curl 2“Curl 2″ 12×16,” oil on wood panel

Fold “Fold” 30×30,” oil on wood panel

Handful“Handful” 8×10,” oil on wood panel

Home“Home” 12×16,” oil on wood panel

Introvert“Introvert” 20×24,” oil on wood panel

Pine“Pine” 12×16,” oil on wood panel

Tuck“Tuck” 30×30,” oil on wood panel

Whiplash 3“Whiplash 3″ 20×24,” oil on wood panel

I tried to keep this collection of work simple, only working with one tube of paint and four brushes. I primed the wood panels with clear gesso, and painted the pieces directly onto the wood, without sketching or transferring drawings first. Once dry, I gave the pieces a protective coating of varnish.

New Work at Sassafras for Belltown Art Walk!

Woah! It’s September already? What happened?!?! This is only three days away, but here it is: I’ve got some new inked girls up at Sassafras for the next month, and opening night is during the Belltown Artwalk, this Friday, September 11th from 6-9pm.

If you haven’t been to Sassafras (and even if you have, of course!) do stop by. They are great. On the corner of 1st Ave and Bell St, at 2307 1st Ave. We’ll have wine! Do come!

flyeri love noodles_sample

“I Love Noodles!”

bad hair day_sample

“Bad Hair Day”

 

Sumi Swirls and Sleeping Girls

Did I not post these? I forgot to post these! I created these five large sumi ink paintings in January for the group show: Wavelengths, at GR2 in Los Angeles. I kept these simple, just sumi ink on watercolor paper.5 More Minutes_sample

“Five more Minutes”coil_sample

“Coil”

Curl 2_sample

“Curl 2”

Dark Matter_sample

“Dark Matter”

Fog_sample

“Fog”

P.S. Hi Fructose wrote a little blurb about the show here (!).

Bitter, Sweet & Slightly Dirty – Show at the Twilight Gallery!

bitter sweet & slightly dirty 2

I’m thrilled [and proud!] to announce that this month I will be showing work at the Twilight Gallery in West Seattle! Co-owner Tracy Cilona got a hold of me a few months back asking if I’d be interested, and after meeting her and seeing the space, I absolutely had to say yes!

“Bitter, Sweet & Slightly Dirty” is a collection of both larger flower collage-portraits and tiny, slighty-sad cute girl drawings, covering my two intensive interests from the past four years.

The show runs through the whole month of July, but the PARTY {which you should come to!} is on July 11th, from 6-9 pm. There will be busking by Whisky Bliss, tea-leaf reading by Kate Ryan, a beautiful zine display by Kook Tephlon, mandala window istallation by Sarah Barrick – all amongst the beautiful collection of wares which is the boutique bit of “Twilight Gallery & Boutique.” Go here: 4306 SW Alaska St., Seattle, WA. Oh, and there’s free parking. Whaat??

Here are some peeks at new work that is currently on the walls:

bare leg weather 3

“Bare Leg Weather”

 eyes to knees 6

“Eyes to Knees”

being small sm

“Being Small”

purple 5

“Purple”

Artist Statement

My responsibility as an artist is to create work that fills an emotional need, and to inspire curiosity and reflection. I need to make visually pleasing and accessible work that also has a little edge. My intent is to create something sober, pleasing, and melancholic – and to show that sadness is necessary and in concert with joy: I am after the bittersweet. I want people to connect to the work, have an emotional reaction to it – an appreciation for the sensuality of the subject matter. I want to remind the viewer of their own imperfections, their own mortality… their own beauty.

I feel a responsibility to continue the tradition of figurative drawing, as an exercise of self-awareness, criticism and appreciation for craftsmanship. I am drawing from the Japanese aesthetic of wabi sabi which – to put it very simply – values imperfection, impermanence, and incompletion. I make an effort to use raw, degradable materials such as paper, charcoal and unfinished wood in my pieces to ensure that they are susceptible to the beauty that comes with age. I cherish the pencil, brush and ink because of their simplicity, versatility and sensuality. The limited palate is capable of a beautiful, rich array of grays: deep, understated, melancholy. The paper and cotton I choose to work on are both delicate and strong, textured and smooth, utilitarian and cheap. We come into contact with these things every day, and to value these materials is to work on an appreciation of the mundane – an appreciation of daily experience.

I reject the traditional figure-ground relationship, omit a horizon – even a ground line – and place my figures within a strictly 2-dimensional space. My girls are at once isolated in the center of their own universes – and interconnected to the smattering of floating, ephemeral objects by which they are surrounded. Loneliness is such a big deal to me. Everybody gets it.

I am obsessed with skin. It’s this weird complex ugly beautiful bag which contains and separates ‘us’ from everything else. Body modification – specifically modifying the skin by inking or puncturing – is to redefine and rewrite our relationship with the world. I am interested in this artificial outline with which we separate ourselves from an imaginary exterior: this outline which separates person – from flower – from insect – from star – from me – and from you.

My drawings are visual poems. Pretty, bittersweet, and slightly dirty – love poems.

 

Whoo! Okay, snapping back out of art-school mode! Seriously though, this show looks so great in the space, I am so happy with the collection of girls I have gathered into one room, and it would mean the world to me to see you there. Till then!

-S

Only five more days…

To buy your tickets under my name online!
If you’re in the Seattle area, please come – it’s going to be so much fun! – And even if you can’t make it, please consider buying a ticket to support me.
To buy tickets, click this link: http://www.rawartists.org/seattle/radiate
In a green box in the upper right corner it will read: BUY TICKETS, and a window will pop open. At the top of the box it will have a scroll down box that says, “Pick the artist you are supporting!”…scroll down and choose my name. Fill in the rest of the information and click “register”, then it will take you to paypal to pay for the ticket. You can pay by credit card through paypal so you don’t even need a paypal account. It starts at 8pm and goes until 11pm Saturday, August 18, 2012.
From what I know so far and from the artists I’ve already met, there will be a great mix of performance and art – a magic show, fashion show, leather masks, ladies and dragons, landscape and portrait photography, and my flowery girly drawings – among so much more! – All housed in the Trinity nightclub in Pioneer Square – 111 Yesler Way – if you haven’t been, go just to see the three separate areas they have (hence -“Trinity” – took me a moment), and the beautiful Chinese-inspired bar.
I hope to see you there!!