Rae Mahaffey

Portland, Oregon, USA

I am concerned with how various visual experiences affect us emotionally. To investigate this, I use color, geometric forms, and pattern to describe what surrounds us in this world, often without our conscious awareness. I am interested in how we perceive color and space, and in how we incorporate them into our subconscious. I endeavor to create imagery that feels surprisingly familiar, but is unlike anything we have known before. I want the images to reveal another way of perceiving the familiar.

My work is dependent on certain modernist notions of form; yet it is postmodernist in its illusionary depth of space. Shape and color are my initial vehicles of expression. I intentionally use unusual combinations of color, abutting transparencies with opaques, and synthetic pigments with natural tones. I assemble these color combinations through the use of patterns and forms found in the organic and manmade systems that surround all of us.

Recently my work has become more architectural, suggesting city streets, buildings, and skylines. It is a reflection of how I feel about my own environment and the sentiments it incorporates. When successful, the work evokes feelings and associations that are ubiquitous to us all.

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