Prilla Smith Brackett

Prilla Smith Brackett

Places of the Heart
October 20 - December 1, 2010

Artist's Statement

"For over seventeen years, I have been approaching landscape in a conceptual way, in that I use landscape to say more than a description of a place. An early series emphasized the intersection of the natural and man-made worlds through juxtaposition and fragmentation of images. Later series became more contemplative.

I have recently been exploring the intermingling of the domestic man-made with the natural in both monoprints and mixed media paintings on panel. Using forest images, I incorporate a bed or a chair, drawn from furniture found in an old family home. Treating the chair or bed from another era as if it were either flat or semi-transparent makes it seem less clear why the piece of furniture is found in the forest. I'm interested in this uncertainty.

In earlier work in this series I made the furniture from collaged, semi-opaque rice paper through which one can see the forest underneath. Now, I paint rather than collage the furniture, experimenting with how transparent and above the forest the furniture is, or how embedded it is within, and sometimes under, the forest. My printmaking has strongly influenced these new works. In the paintings I'm layering transparent colors with the (often surprising) color results found in my monoprints, "printing" with paint, and using paint applied linearly, influenced by small drypoint marks.

The viewer may wonder why the old furniture is in the forest. However, forests have played a large role in our histories, and I'm aware of tapping into such associations. Forests have given us raw material and air cleansed of carbon dioxide. They have been scary places on the edges of civilization. They have been places of refuge and hidden secrets, of solace and spirituality, of make-believe. I hope to create spaces where imagination can wander and memory can surface."

Artist's Talk and Reception: Wednesday, November 3, 6:00 - 8:00 pm