June 29 – July 24
Reception: June 28, 2 – 4pm
Painter Stephanie McGuinness of Englewood shares Recent Works, a series that explores how life events in the outside world become apparent in the domestic landscape.
I have long been interested in how life events physically manifest themselves within the realm of private spaces. Collecting discarded notes and lists found in public spaces has granted me limited access to intimate and honest moments of strangers’ lives. Using these found documents I create narratives told through the environments of a house. In a similar way to how I find the documents, viewers are granted access to personal spaces, but hover slightly outside of the frame, unconnected to its inhabitants. The surface of the paint is rough and sometimes transparent to signify the painting process itself, as well as to reflect on how rooms leave traces of their past as they continue to evolve.
What is unique about your process and how does this define your practice?
For years I have been collecting discarded papers found in public spaces, often lists or notes documenting a large range of emotion and experiences. Using these handwritten documents, I begin creating a narrative in which I explore who I think the authors are and how they live. My process begins with writing, then evolves into drawing on paper, and finally accumulates on canvas with the finished piece.
What influences your work or your creative process?
It is hard to separate anything in my life from my creative process. While I am working, music is often too distracting for me, but I have found that listening to NPR or streaming television shows creates an appropriate level of distraction. Those environmental influences, along with books I am reading, tend to find their way into my work.
What lessons have you learned from other artists?
Regardless of medium, the lesson is always that you have to continue to make work—lots of work, your entire life. I look to writers, musicians, and other creative individuals for insights into the creative process. After the cardinal rule of constant work, I have also learned that artists have to work through “bad” work until they can get to the succesful work. While this is often hard and not the most relaxing way to spend one’s time, I believe that pushing through those rough periods is what makes someone not only create successful work, but develops them into a true artist.