Artist Statement

Mark Thomas Anderson

Artist Statement

          Seeing is a developmental process that I am continuously engaged in within my studio practice.  Each day my eyes absorb a little more information from what I am studying, and this information influences the way that I apply oil paint onto a surface. 

Light and color are very important in my work. Constantly examining, I try to understand the active and often delicate interaction between light and shadow, this is why I work from direct observation. Having direct contact with my subject provides me with a compass which can redirect me when I feel lost within my paintings. I transition from painting to painting as the sun moves through the sky, only painting when the light is right and drawing when it isn’t.

          Drawing is an important part in each stage of my paintings.  Regardless of what stage a painting may be in, I do not hesitate when I feel that a painting needs to be redrawn.  As I draw a form I gain an understanding of its physical qualities and its spatial relationship to me.  When I fill in the drawn shapes with color I try to feel the quality of light in that particular space

ver the past five years my work has mainly consisted of still-life paintings, but I have recently been painting in the landscape and from the human figure more often. My work consists of objects, places, and people within my surroundings. I oftentimes organize my compositions to suggest concerns from my daily life. Some objects that I have used in my work are skulls, potted cacti, fruit, foot-lockers, bricks, and fabrics. These items have entered into my work through various avenues of my personal history, from my immediate surroundings, and from the canvases of painters that I admire.

Throughout the painting process, I scrutinize and adjust my drawing and color placement, scraping away and rebuilding from the residual image until I am satisfied.  I have been exploring various mediums, additives, and pigments in order to expand the dialogue within my work. Some additional tools that I find useful are rulers, a calculator, sandpaper, rags, and at times, the tips of my fingers. 

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