Artist Statement

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Caitlyn Shea in her Artist Studio


I am fascinated by the physicality of human and animal forms and their fleeting nature. My work investigates and satiates human curiosities about the anatomy, color, and structure of creatures.  The fluidity and plasticity of paint allows me to both express and defy the regular physical boundaries that human and animal bodies ultimately adhere to; therefore speaking to the perception of our subconscious mind. My paintings conjure ideas of sublimity and the strong sense of both joy and macabre that comes from observing large, boundless forms. While the colors of my paintings reflect the alluring palette of the natural world, there is an underlying chaotic and experimental sensibility.

In my paintings I am able to explore the tactile relationship between acrylic paint, spraypaint, and charcoal.  The surprising anomalies that occur from combining these materials are born out of chance. The process is highly reactive to the process of painting, and I do not pre-plan the finished result.  My initial renderings of the subject are repeatedly painted over and reworked many times until the work feels complete and the composition has a sense of inevitability.  I am continuously physically engaged with my paintings; using brushes, my hands, rags, straight edges, tape, and other materials to experiment and slightly manipulate the mediums as the paintings move towards their end.  This rigorous “attack” approach to painting is typically considered a masculine trait, however my work challenges that stereotype and brings a fresh, feminine perspective to the powerful tradition of expressionist painting.

 

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