Carrie Patterson | Visual Artist

 

I paint to give expression to the experience of inhabiting space. I am involved in a practice of recording visual events in order to understand the impact of the physical on the emotional world around me. My hope is to create a geometric object that embodies a poetic, physical translation of place. The geometry found in architectural forms holds my attention. I am particularly interested in the vernacular architecture of places that I know well. I live in Southern Maryland and have been interested in historic chapels, barns, houses and temporary billboards. Through the accumulation of remembered experiences, I create objects made out of blocks, paper, and paint that imply a narrative of time observed and felt by the viewer. Embedded in my process is the choice to slow down the speed of information and find meaning in subtle variation. I layer paint on the canvas, block on block, and paper on paper until a sensation of spatial elasticity is realized. LightBox is a body of work based on a historic home called Breton House, currently my studio. The house has many large windows that overlook the small Town Square of Leonardtown. Because this is my studio, I am able to re-visit and re-see this particular site over a period of time. Working from the same building is a way of mining an experience of the building and the land as a living body. In LightBox I am reusing cardboard boxes rather than traditional canvas or paper. Cardboard is a material that is abundant and strong. By using available, local, and malleable material like cardboard, my process mimics pre industrial construction while also using 21st century pigments. In each object that I make, I distill shape, line and color into the simplest components creating a body of work where time and sequence become important. I work on many surfaces at once, altering the arrangement of built surfaces of line, shape and color in subtle degrees, much like a choreographer would alter a repetitive action across the stage.

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Carrie Patterson’s colors are soft yet saturated with pigmented light; her paintings have a certain quality of subtle illumination emanating from them. Each area of color is equally filled with light and contained gently but securely within its own distinct space. Like the rooms of a house or the people within that structure, they depend on each other for their shape and placement. Such is the structural intimacy within these composition; one cannot imagine how the entirety could hold up if even one of the elements went missing.

--- Jeanne Wilkinson
Exhibition Catalog for New York Painters
Museo de Arte Moderno, Bogota Colombia, 2005