Sunday, July 4, 2010

Nihonga and Encaustic

I've been revisiting Nihonga as I have prepared for this class. For the past couple years I've been exploring Encaustic more....painting with wax. The beauty of Nihonga with the way light reflects off the mineral pigments gets lost when enveloped with wax so I wasn't seeing how to bring these two together.

Both techniques draw me in because they use light in such beautiful ways. I love the depth and the mystery that grows as the layers get built up. I think it speaks alot to the way life actually least for me. Time is a series of layers, each adding is own pain and its own beauty.

I've started combining Nihonga and Encaustic lately though. The above painting is an example. I have to start out in Nihonga since its a water base process and won't work over the wax. But then I've come back into parts of it with the wax. (the blue areas are mostly wax) and it looks almost like it's submerged in liquid.

I'm beginning to work on a series of paintings for a show I'm doing with Julie Insun Youn at the Overture Center in Madison WI in January called Beauty for Ashes Her work also explores layers of meaning and what lies beneath the surface and we thought we would make a good show together. Beauty for Ashes is about mystery and deep spaces as well as transformation. We explore how pain and suffering as well as the mundane and common weaves through our lives and is able to be transformed into something intrinsically beautiful.

I packed my wax and hot plate and sent it up to Vancouver. I'm intending to explore the marriage of these two techniques more.

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