When Brenda Barnum looks at a flower, she sees not a flower but an abstraction of that image. Her work is often taken from memory and she seeks not to re-create still life but to reason it in abstract terms. Her work is more about process of painting than the representation of flowers. Each painting has up to fifteen layers of color and thin glazes of transparent color set over heavily impasto and palette knifed gesso. Barnum uses this layering of paint to juxtapose concepts like weight, light and order versus chaos. Some areas are intended to feel incredibly heavy while others are sanded down to achieve an airiness. Each flower head interrelates to each other and how it addresses the viewer. It is very complicated to make an image simple as possible and to make that image resonate beauty. Barnum’s backgrounds too are complex featuring mysterious and atmospheric qualities achieved by a made up light source. The viewers eye does not travel with the fall of light but in a complicated movement where each element beckons to be accepted.
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Last Updated (Thursday, 01 April 2010 09:33)