Judy Southerland



"The ultimate end of things, where they cannot go any further, is not bound by rules and measures;" from On Trust in the Heart, translated by D.T. Suzuki


Traditionally, a quest is that long, arduous journey promising our heart's desire. In these paintings, airy, groundless spaces serve as fields for action or articulated places for pause and reflection. Lacking wings, we do what we can to open up our grounded place. 
Accompanied by desire and fear, we are prepared from an early age by communal stories and games to venture out.


In this project, I use narrative photos as a sketchbook and images are transformed using paper stencils and intensive screen-printing to become parts of larger tableaus. Laborious as the method is, I like the precision accompanied by animated shift in the edges of an image. I use the screen as a brush stroke, large or small, and depend on many layers of highly transparent color to build volumetric presence. The risk of not knowing the results until the screen is lifted provides surprise and new possibilities.  It's like painting blind.


Drawing is used as counterpoint with each step being provisional as I measure the value of transparent, performative marks which I cannot change, against the long slough of layering and labor which can change most anything.









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