Artist Statement and Video on youtube I paint what I know
In Urban Scrawl (2013), I sought to uncover a new form of self-expression, a language that found its roots in graffiti but became something else entirely. I layered encaustic and street-artist ink, carving and splattering the surfaces of my canvasses to juxtapose thriving cities and broken landscapes, spare beginnings and elaborate ends. The result was a vibrant montage of textures, strokes, and colors—an abstracted reflection of the chaotic and dynamic scenes that were the impetus behind this work.
As an ardent observer, I drew inspiration from my taxi rides over the Manhattan Bridge—the deafening noise of a hundred different languages, the massive warehouses covered in colorful tags, and the wild, raw feeling of crossing into a new world. I remembered the beautiful, sprawling cacophony of South Africa, the jarring disconnect between dilapidated shantytowns and shiny new BMW dealerships, the effusive energy that filled the air. I looked back on the boarded-up farm steads and dilapidated steel mills I’ve encountered on trail rides and road trips, the imagery of crumbling concrete and weather-worn billboards—not urban, yet covered in graffiti, as if the life of the city was somehow leaking into the broken-down landscape.
My three previous series, Youngstown, Honest Work, and Whitewash, laid the foundation for Scrawl, which combines the brilliant colors, grid system, and bold, loose lines of its predecessors to create an entirely new perspective. Scrawl is another step forward in the push and pull between my materials and my intentions, but the discordance exposes a common denominator; whether you’re in a metropolis exploding with energy or in an atrophying rural landscape, there will always be graffiti. It is a universal language, the embodiment of deep-seated unrest, of hope, of frustration, and of the undying desire for emancipation. It is a voice that wants to be heard, a medium that can turn any rusted surface into a work of art.
In the end, that’s what Urban Scrawl is meant to be; an undeniable expression of self, a challenge and an invitation, a mark I make on the world.
For information on current show listings please see my blog at www.patriciaaaron.com
Patricia Aaron is award winning contemporary abstract painter. Her distinctive work has deep roots: much of her signature style encaustic art was inspired by her childhood home near Ohio’s busy steel mills. Youngstown’s heavily industrialized environment left an indelible impression, one that catalyzed Aaron’s interest in integrating cultural landscape into her artwork. Aaron also draws inspiration from street art and graffiti, evident in her evocative mark making and striking, graphic imagery.
Aaron uses the malleability of pigmented wax to create lustrous, uniquely beautiful surfaces. Each piece is textured and layered upon, building a captivating, tactile surface with expressive depth. Her use of vivid colors, bold lines and daring composition continues to evolve, resulting in ever-more dynamic, distinctive work.
Aaron’s work has been featured in solo museum, airport exhibitions and invitational gallery exhibits throughout the United States, and featured in both regional and national publications. Her work is held in numerous US, European and UK private and corporate collections.
Patricia Aaron earned an MFA from University of Denver School of Art and Art History, in Denver, Colorado. She has exhibited at the Denver International Airport, Denver, CO, Nicolaysen Museum of Art, Casper, WY, Metropolitan State University of Denver Center for Visual Arts, Denver, CO, Museum of Outdoor Arts, Englewood, CO, Madden Museum of Art (Best of Show, This is Colorado), Studio Aiello (Best of Show), Curtis Arts and Humanities Center (Juror’s Award), 910 Arts Center (Juror’s Award), Colorado Women’s College Hirschfeld Gallery, Regis University O’Sullivan Gallery, Loveland Museum of Art, Arvada Center for Arts and Humanities, Artwork Network, Republic Plaza, Western Center for the Arts, Spark Gallery, Zip Gallery, Teal Art Gallery, Art Students League of Denver, Sandra Phillips Gallery, Niza Knoll Gallery, Translations Gallery and Ice Cube Gallery.
She has also exhibited in New York (NYC) Ohio, Massachusetts, Washington, D.C., Maryland, Virginia, Louisiana, Florida, Texas, Michigan, Georgia, New Mexico, Wyoming and Reykjavik, Iceland and Augsburg, Germany, and completed public art commissions for Museum of Outdoor Arts in Englewood, Colorado, IGW Records in Littleton, Colorado, and the Tobacco Free Kids Campaign in Washington, D.C.
Aaron’s work has been featured in Colorado Abstract: Paintings and Sculpture, Studio Visit magazine, American Art Collector, Southwest Art, Santa Fean, Studio Visit (2015 and 2016) Denver Post, Westword, Washington Post, Cumberland River Review, 5280.com, and many other regional and national publications.
Aaron has received artist residency fellowships to SIM Residency, Korpulfsstadir Reykjavik Iceland, Hui No’eau, Maui, Hawaii, Ucross Foundation, Ucross, Wyoming; Museum of Outdoor Arts, Englewood, Colorado; Anderson Ranch Arts Center in Snowmass, Colorado; Santa Fe Art Institute, Santa Fe, New Mexico; and Virginia Center for Creative Arts, Sweet Briar, Virginia.
Her teaching experience includes working as Adjunct Faculty with the University of Denver, University of Colorado at Denver, Regis University, Arapahoe Community College, and as Instructor with University of Denver Ricks Center and the Arts Students League of Denver