Marianne Barcellona’s artwork is dynamic, her thinking is refreshing, and her perspective inquisitive and varied.
When she finds herself creatively blocked, she climbs back using every tool available to her. She uses drawing, photography, and painting. She tears paper. She reads. She uses imagination and “emotionally projects herself” into the artwork.
“Several years ago I was going through a “dry” period of feeling artistically blocked. I happened to be in the Strand Bookstore one day and saw a book by the German artist Gerhard Richter entitled Wald (Forest). It consisted of hundreds of photos of dense, leafless trees – brambles, impenetrable underbrush, with no pathway through the obstructions. The images resonated with the way I was feeling creatively stuck.So I bought the book and selected a few images to use as “jumping off” points. I pretended I was lost in the woods. I emotionally projected myself into these photographs one by one, and used my pen points and my brushes as my feet, to try to penetrate the woods. I would climb a tree with the pen point, jump to another branch like a squirrel, lose my footing, scamper back, fall into a knot of brambles, start off again from the front, stumble on rocks and fallen logs, get lost, claw myself sideways, retrace my steps over and over on the uneven ground.”
If she runs into problems, she adapts and builds upon her mistakes. If a drawing develops a hole, she incorporates it. She considers this part of the dialogue she shares with the piece.“Because I was originally working only in ink I frequently lost the white of the paper, so when I wanted to edit some marks, I scraped. Eventually the paper developed holes which needed patching from the back. After awhile I also started patching on the front and re-
drawing over the patches to obscure them. When I didn’t like a result, I would pull off the patch. I found this often left unpredictable debris of interesting textures. Dialoguing with the landscapes and with my materials this way has developed into my current process.
When I start a drawing I have no real idea how it will finally turn out. The “drawings” themselves (now more collages) seem to slowly dictate to
me, step by step, what the next single action should be. I never know how long a work will take. Sometimes the “instructions” come fast; sometimes the work needs to sit for days or weeks before it suddenly tells me the next step. Then unexpectedly the drawing will tell me “Enough! This is the way I want to be.”
Currently I use my own photographs as my inspiration. When I travel I make a point of capturing the portions of landscape that intrigue me, so I can welcome them back to the studio and have an interactive, process-oriented conversation with them.”Marianne is showing her work at Rockaway Brewing Co. on Thursday night from 6pm-9pm. We would love to see you there. Facebook Event Page