Inspired by Ordinary Materials

“The artist’s world is limitless. It can be found anywhere, far from where he lives or a few feet away. It is always on his door.” – Paul Strand (1890 – 1976), photographer

The most prosaic materials with a touch of “je ne sais quoi” can find a place on my studio walls, like the plastic six-pack rings and fabric netting that cushioned a shipment of holiday fruits. I lived with them hanging from this black clip for about a year wondering….

I found the design of these six-pack rings elegant. This might seem an oxymoron, but their negative spaces are ovoid surrounded by a mesmerizingly rhythmic pattern and the plastic is a cool-shaded blue. I had saved discarded boards marred by a saw mark which is now the intentional thin white line contrasted against a solid red, blue or dark brown color. Then, I explored ways to suspend the translucent rings and create cast shadows. The five finished pieces in this series called, “Save the Dolphins,” can be hung alone or as a group. Here are examples:

“Save the Dolphin” Series | Artist: Meg Fitzpatrick| 11-1/2” x 11-1/2” | acrylic on board; mixed media

What appealed to me about the fruit packing material was its delicate quality. The transparency of the mesh made for another experiment with cast shadows. The wheat color was perfect against a dark brown surface. For “Save the Dolphins” and this piece named, “Quantum Wave,” the materials were suspended by using hardware-bought clear plastic nuts and metal bolts. The “Quantum Wave” when lit shimmers, yet the piece always has a 3-D wafer quality.

Quantum Wave | Artist: Meg Fitzpatrick | 38” x 19” acrylic, graphite, mixed media on board

As I’ve spent more time getting educated and learning about sculpture at the Nasher Sculpture Center, I’ve noticed that I have become more experimental with materials and some of my paintings, like these, are a hybrid of painting-sculpture.

Notice the beauty in the ordinary and enjoy your week…until Sunday.

2 thoughts on “Inspired by Ordinary Materials

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