Ellen Byrnes: Paintings on Wood Veneer
Category : Featured Artists
Opening night for “Paintings on Wood Veneer” by Ellen Byrnes is Thursday, October 3, 2019 from 6:00-8:00 pm. The exhibition runs from October 3-November 14, 2019.
Please join us for light refreshments on October 3rd at Art of Framing, Inc. at 2505 S. Earl Ave., Lafayette, IN 47905. It is free and open to the public.
Artist: Ellen Byrnes
Exhibition: Paintings on Wood Veneer
Exhibition Dates: October 3-November 14, 2019
Opening: October 3, 2019 from 6:00-8:00 pm
Artist’s Statement: This series of paintings originates from my interest in using unusual grounds for painting surfaces. I acquired a book of wood veneer samples many years ago and planned to make small paintings using the color and grain of the wood as the background, hopefully showing through the surface layers. When I returned to West Lafayette several years ago from a lifetime in San Francisco, I began a series of studies inspired by a familiar and natural world. Although I use photos for reference, I rely heavily on a pieced together vision of the world that is part childhood memory, part dream imagery, and part present day objective reality.
The choice of materials is very earthy and organic. I feel that the opacity and matte finish of the water-based gouache paint lends itself well to the porousness of the untreated wood veneer surface. In certain pieces, I have also combined several different types of paint including acrylic, oil, and gold leaf as well as various drawing materials including watercolor pencils and graphite. At times I like to juxtapose the industrial landscape with the surrounding natural environment. It is part of my artistic goal to combine unlikely elements into the same piece and that includes subject matter and art mediums.
One of my main concerns as an artist is composition–how things fit into a rectangle or square format. Over the past few years I have experimented with single panel pieces and have branched out to multi-paneled painted wood constructions. Each panel should hold its own compositionally while integrally orchestrating the whole composition. Working with the varying wood grains lends itself greatly to the exploration of multi-paneled compositions.