Eva Lake

Portland, Oregon, USA

My favorite place is the open sky, and because I love it so, I paint it many times. The format of the grid released me to explore what always interested me: how color changes and moves, creating a painting that functions like a living object.

My goal in painting is to create an experience you feel as opposed to a composition you read. I treasure an infinite space. In my latest body of work, the Richter Scale, I left behind the grid and embraced an ongoing line, not dissimilar to Brancusi’s Endless Column. It has to do with where we are on the planet, but also where we are in time: the infinite and the near, the specific place of the West. I grew up in this part of the world. I took it with me everywhere that I went. It never left me—I always had the place, the land, the sky, the water. And the paint.

People have said that my work also looks like woven fabric. A probable influence is my family’s collection of Indian rugs and weavings, all at one time belonging to my grandfather who was part Indian. Those woven pieces were the first pieces of art I ever saw, and they are sort of coming back to me in my own work. I use no stencils or airbrushes, and the results are similar to the irregular organic patterns found in both nature and those weavings.

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