Shelly Gilchrist

Kozo paper and encaustic
38 x 51 x 4 in.

I use organic materials – wood, mulberry paper, beeswax and resin – to create active abstractions of a natural world that is in constant flux. Making sculptural paintings and drawings that allude to landscapes and skyscapes allows me to maintain a connection to nature while leading a city-based life. I emphasize abstraction to convey rhythms and movement, by using curvilinear motifs in patterns of delicate paper loops or in the shapes of the wood ground. Vivid vibrating colors bring energy to the work, and smooth molten encaustic surface textures in the paintings enhance the overall organic quality. As shapes in low relief, my pieces create shadows that add an element of mystery and complexity to the work and invoke the effects of light and atmosphere in the natural world. My broad aim is to create a sense of sky or land synergistically, using materials, lighting and abstract design to conjure an overall impression of motion.