Elizabeth Slayton, Painter

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Painting, Printmaking, and Drawing
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Studio 17, Upper Level

Artist Statement

In the last several years I have been painting large scale, non-traditional, realistic still life in oil on canvas. In this work I have been interested in evoking the is-ness of things, the simplicity of things as they are in their particularity. I have been drawn to details, to roundness and volume, to aliveness, luminosity, stillness and clarity. In these paintings, the objects have expanded beyond the edges of the canvas. This up-closeness creates a sense of immediacy, intimacy and participation, a sense of being here, in the moment, without reservation.

Moving closer, in particular to the onion, I discovered another world of image and composition and design. A crack in the skin, or the lines of veins, or a sudden emerging of color below the skin begin to suggest different layers of meaning. To the viewer it becomes less clear what it is that one is seeing and invites a different kind of looking. It takes one beyond the familiar, beyond the limits of our ordinary way of knowing things and into more imagination. An interplay begins to happen between the microcosm and the macrocosm -- as I move into smaller and smaller sections, the images expand out into greater and greater spaces.

Over the last few years I have been painting magnolia blossoms and gingko leaves, a new expression of the unfolding of light.

A new series of paintings represents a dramatic shift from my earlier work. As the series title Threshold suggests, this work emerges out of profound changes in my life, releasing expansive and unrestrained new energy, colors and depth. The threshold crossed has moved my paintings into an exploration of the interiority of aliveness, an exploration of the life force itself, the vital energy that infuses all things.

Elizabeth Slayton attended the Boston Museum School of Fine Arts, Penn State University and Massachusetts College of Art. She has been painting and exhibiting for more than 35 years, showing in solo and group shows throughout the US and abroad. Her paintings are included in private and corporate collections.

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Two Pears
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