The Stories We Tell Ourselves Exhibition

Date/Time: Saturday, September 23, 2023, 8am – 5pm EDT
Location: Shields Center for Visual Arts - Suraci Gallery

Garrison pic

The Stories We Tell Ourselves is a series of mixed media works and drawings looking at anthropomorphic characters found throughout world religion, mythology, and contemporary fiction. The characters represented here each
come from stories or histories in which they embody human personality traits,
both positive and negative. We all use characters such as these to define
ourselves, who you have been, who you are, who you want to be? Do you talk
of astrological signs and characteristics? Do you identify with a spirit animal?
Do you put on a mask for strength, comfort, protection, or anonymity? Every
day, every interaction, every conversation, comes with a question of which face
we are going to use. Who do we want to be that day? Who do we identify
with? Who do we want to represent us?

The impetus of this series began over 16 years ago when Reynard began to
reveal himself repeatedly in multiple aspects of my daily life, from books, movies,
songs, and general conversation. I find it very intriguing when a character stays
with me for a prolonged period of time, whether I am at a point to capture
them in paint or not, and I am very pleased to finally be able to present this cast
of characters in their entirety to you.

The paintings themselves develop as layers which mask or reveal the drawing
underneath. There are no physically mixed colors, each hue is the result of the
layering of thin glazes of pure color. Each mixed media piece, with paper
affixed to wood panel, and multiple glazes of paint applied to it act as a series
of masks only revealing the final form when I choose to stop. The color that you
perceive at this point is optically mixed by each viewer as the light passes
through the multiple transparent ‘masks’. Each viewer may actually perceive
them slightly differently depending on their color sensitivities. I hope that you
enjoy the exhibition, as you see it.

Who are you when you walk into this exhibition, and who will you choose to be
as you leave it?


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