In Composure, I created a series of 18 landscapes exploring the sublime and surreal presence of large construction projects such as levee systems, wind turbines, and gas structures in the rural communities in the Northern Tier of Pennsylvania and the Southern Tier of New York. Mainly inspired by the awe I experienced when I first witnessed these through the landscape when I moved into the area several years ago. Some of the sites were historical, such as the tragedy of the Austin Dam which collapsed in 1911, killing 78 people in its wake. The levee system overflow by pass in Tioga County, which was constructed as a result from the massive flooding to hit the region in the 70’s. Other sites more contemporary, in the form of massive windmills across the area’s hill tops to be seen miles away, in addition to the large scale natural gas excavations in effect throughout the area creating a staggering visual highway of connecting pipelines. Visually all of these sites are stunning and I felt they should be recorded as an imprint or mark in time in the form of paintings.
Sill Life Arrangements
I have always been attracted to representational artwork and the challenge of it while in my studio. With a desire to learn new technical approaches, I find the process effects of oils and the many different outcomes one can achieve with the medium quite fascinating. Currently, I am focused on the use of color glazes and the effects of luminosity while exploring traditional layering utilizing Flake White through still life arrangements. In the past, I have explored the industrial landscape, technology and culture (ongoing interest), and the portrait narrative. I find field research in the creation process enjoyable and often like to go out and simply explore my surroundings.
Bridget Bossart van Otterloo
My paintings are about the beauty in nature. I believe that the beauty found in nature enriches our existence. Natural forms, elegant lines, bold colors, and the intrinsic details found in nature are the themes in my work. My most recent paintings explore the interaction between humans and the natural world. Nature is incredibly resilient as it continues to persevere in the face of man-made threats.
When painting I try to represent nature accurately, but also from my own viewpoint. I usually start a painting observing from life, with the subject in front of me. I prefer to work from life for as long as possible, forgoing using photographs in an effort to capture the true essence of my subjects. I use either oil or watercolor in thin transparent layers; this technique creates a luminous glow throughout the piece. My work has been influenced by the “Old Masters”—Italian and Spanish still life painters, and Dutch flower painters. The daily inspiration for my artwork comes from nature—as Albrecht Durer said, “For verily, art is embedded in nature; he who can extract it, has it.”