New American Paintings/Blog

Q&A: Nancy White by openstudiospress
August 25, 2010, 2:39 pm
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#39, 2010 | Acrylic on hand-tinted paper, 5.06 x 6.88 inches

Last featured in edition #85 of New American Paintings, Nancy White produces intimately-scaled and optically charged geometric abstractions that invite viewers to question their dimensionality, where the distinction between what is painted and what is seen is often elusive. Through the manipulation of basic, concrete elements like light and form, White’s works—although small—make a big impact. We caught up with the artist this week to discuss her work and her new pieces made on steel.  —EJG

EJG: What’s going on in your studio right now? Tell me about your new work.
I am pushing the relationship between my works on paper and my works on steel – being true to the material and visual differences between these pieces, yet conscious of their interpenetrating aesthetic qualities.  Earlier this year I scaled the works on paper from a range of 8 – 12 inches down to 4 – 8 inches, closer to the proportions of the steel works. I toned down their color contrasts and immediately a different and more direct conversation between the two bodies of work appeared.

#8 Md_Bl_Gy, 2010 | Oil on primed steel, 5.5 x 8.25 x 1.5 inches

In the steel pieces my brushwork is becoming more prominent. Surprisingly, and kind of counter-intuitively, this is making the steel appear to be paper. What is happening overall is that although the pieces are hard edged — the outer edges of the steel, the geometric forms in the work on paper — their appearance is becoming one of softness. Beyond being perceptually and perspectively uncertain, they are visually contradicting themselves.

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