Viewing single post of blog Laurel Berry


I am a painter currently studying the remaining 2 months of a Masters degree in Arts Practice.

For my artist statement visit;

After working for a large majority of time this year on board/cardboard/board no bigger than a cd case, I have decided to start experimenting with a larger scale.

Previous to this Masters I have always worked on a bigger scale around 1metre x 1metre on average. When I initially started working on postcard sized canvases I felt completely uncomfortable. My reflective journal reads;

“[I]…don’t like it. [Painting]…feels unnatural, all my movements have changed. It doesn’t feel or look like MY visual language.” Berry, 2014.

This was the first step in me challenging and pushing my practice to try and see it in new light. My intention was to throw myself out of my comfort zone and to engage with my painting on a new level.

Now that “uncomfortable-ness” has become comfortable. The small scale has now become my comfort zone.  It’s just like anything if you become over-familiar with something or of you do it a lot and it becomes mundane. Human brain are so adaptive and I’ve found I have to keep finding ways to change my process to try and push myself into areas of not-knowing. Im questioning, am I trying to stop my language and process becoming habitual?

There is the notion of a painter working and working until they reach a moment where they become a undisputed genius who, produces masterpiece after masterpiece without fail – one day they find the magic formula.

Contrary to this notion in my practice I have found that the moment I begin to feel comfortable or find myself being formulaic in my approach is the time my paintings become their weakest – the work becomes less convincing in its language.

Within my last few months of study I will be interrogating whether or not process is inherent in creating a unique painterly language or can language still be seen as “authentic” when constructed with replicated or “learnt” mark and gesture?

Is the “authentic language” a momentary occurrence which happens once through experimental process and as soon as it becomes a conscience aim or a learnt tool it becomes replication of the process and language, even when repeated by the artist themselves?