I’ve been working on a commission that I recieved from the Prince Edward Idland Council of the arts for the 150th anniversary of the Charlottetown Conference. The paintings are on board, and the work is coming along steadily. Some of the pieces I’ve completed will be dropped when it comes time to select the final paintings. It’s been awhile since I’ve worked on board and I have to admit I prefer working with paper.
An introduction can be a wonderful thing. You can meet interesting people, and make new friends. You can be introduced to your new favorite foods, books, music, or artist.
I’d like to introduce you to some of my favorite artists. Some of whom I’ve been familiar with for years, and others I’ve only recently been introduced to.
The person I’d like to introduce is the artist Steven Baris.
Tyler School of Art, MFA, 1985
The Evergreen State College, BA, 1978
Instituto Allende, 1975
San Miguel de Allende, Mexico
“I am drawn to spaces that are engineered to be placeless: from interiors to landscapes–spaces that are highly disorienting and are precisely designed to be passed through as quickly and efficiently as possible. Think airports, expressways and lobbies. Lately I’ve been frequenting similar kinds of spaces, no less enigmatic and no less banal: those sprawling tracts dotted about the edges of the cities and suburbs, characterized by the clotted networks of expressways and county roads and, most importantly to me, those massive, horizontal structures variously called distribution centers or logistics centers.
These largely overlooked yet high functioning landscapes disclose many of the same spatial tensions and enigmas that I address in my art making. At the heart of both lies an amalgam of space and structure, both largely determined by seen and unseen geometries. In my paintings and projects I conjure a sense of space that is highly elastic and ambiguous. I aim to juggle and confound those key oppositions that underpin spatial coherence: basic binaries such as close-distant, container-contained, surface-depth, opaque-transparent, and so on.
I never really know the true nature of my fascinations and certainly not these forays (actual and artistic) into various states of disorientation and dislocation. Yet I feel we are experiencing unprecedented transformations of our built and virtual environments, and so ultimately these works are neither more nor less than my playful stabs at a better understanding.” SB
Other material relating to Steven Baris.
Artist website: stevenbaris.com
Pentimenti Gallery: Steven Baris
Geoform: Steven Baris
Tilted Arc: Steven Baris
Lisa Pressman Art Blog: Steven Baris
Youtube: Steven Baris
Tim McFarlane: Steven Baris