Mixed media on paper
35.25 x 68.25
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From Susan Brenner’s Natural Histories series.
This body of abstract works on paper was created by combining digital and hand techniques. I stripped color – flesh – from the type of imagery I had been working with for several years, paring it down, “weathering” it to the point that it was nothing but a complex maze of lines. I felt as though I was traveling forward in time to a point when, as an archaeologist, I would discover these “skeletal remains” of my own making. Once I had discovered these remains, I layered and built them up to create new structures to which I added color, thereby “reincarnating” them into new life forms.
I see the works as maps or recordings of (un)natural processes that I have conjured. Many elements are held together precariously, making the images seem like they are in a state of flux. The vertical pieces point to portraiture. The large format horizontal pieces make reference to cinema in their proportions and are intended to suggest the unfolding of activity over time. With these pieces, I was thinking of explosions, though they seem to be happening in slow motion and are as much, if not more, about creation as they are about destruction.
— Susan Brenner