ARTIST STATEMENT

Botanicals have long been essential symbols and archetypes in the human imagination. The concept of Biophilia – the innate human love of nature – and the symbiotic and interdependent relationship between plants and humans is a significant motivator for my work. I hope to inspire viewers to consider these ideas as they engage with my images.  In Edward Wilson’s book “Biophilia”, he says the conservation ethic increases when people feel more connected to the natural world.

My strongest childhood memories are of forests and mountains filled with trees and plants, where my imagination and body were sparked alive with feeling. Science now recognizes “forest bathing” – spending time in nature – as important to health and wellness.

I’m fascinated with the widespread human tendency to imbue particular plants with symbolic significance. Throughout history and across cultures, plants have conveyed special meaning. Pomegranate hints at the cycles of nature and the Feminine, and Lotus hints at Buddhist enlightenment. 

I believe that the contemporary disconnect of humans from the natural world is harming the human psyche as much as it is harming the planet. The alarming number of human-caused threats to plants and the environment requires a massive awakening to the importance of biodiversity and conservation. 

By using botanical imagery in my paintings, I endeavor to awaken the viewer’s inner response to archetypal images of the natural world and, at the same time, encourage attention to outer circumstances that affect us all.

Using encaustic, oil paint, collage, and drawing, I merge representational plant forms with suggestive abstract elements. Encaustic medium is made from beeswax derived from plant pollen, a material that depends upon the availability of pollinator plants. In my compositions, I use color interpretively and include a variety of mixed media under and over the encaustic wax layers to create visual depth. I’m interested in an intriguing middle ground, where elements and references become abstract, whisper suggestions, and transition into a mysterious realm: nuanced, poetic, and unknown.

ARTIST BIO

Alison grew up exploring the Rocky Mountains in Canada. Her father taught her about geology and evolution, and her mother, an avid gardener, taught her about plants and how to pay attention to the natural world. Science and Nature became her teachers. At seventeen, Alison began traveling around the world, experiencing vastly different geographies and cultures. For the past seventeen years Alison has taught drawing and painting to high school students at Albuquerque Academy. Alison has a BFA in painting from the University of Calgary, in Alberta, and an MA in Art Therapy from UNM. Her background in outdoor education and art therapy have given her a deep appreciation for the transformative and healing power of both nature and art. Her work is shown at Exhibit 208 in Albuquerque, and has appeared in juried shows at the Albuquerque Museum, 516 Arts Downtown, The Encaustic Museum in Santa Fe, and The Farmington Museum. She just had a solo show at the Harwood Art Center (Oct 2019), and in February of 2020 she will have a solo show at Exhibit 208 in Albuquerque. 

 

EXHIBITIONS

2020  Solo Exhibition, Exhibit 208, Albuquerque, NM
2019  14th Annual 12x12 Exhibition and Fundraiser, Harwood Art Center, Albuquerque, NM
          20 Year Anniversary Group Show, Exhibit 208, Albuquerque, NM
          Biophilia: Our True Nature (solo exhibition), Harwood Art Center, Albuquerque, NM
          Arts Thrive Art Exhibition and Benefit (Oct-Dec), Albuquerque Museum, Albuquerque, NM
          Luanem Gallery Group Show, Menaul School, Albuquerque, NM
          April Price Projects Gallery, Albuquerque, NM
          Group Show, Exhibit 208, Albuquerque, NM          
          Summer Group Show, Exhibit 208, Albuquerque, NM
         
 Spring Group Show, Exhibit 208, Albuquerque, NM
          Corrales Bosque Gallery, Guest Artist, Corrales, NM
2018  December Group Show, Exhibit 208, Albuquerque, NM
          ArtsThrive Art Exhibition and Benefit, Albuquerque Museum, Albuquerque, NM
          13th Annual 12x12 Exhibition and Fundraiser, Harwood Art Center, Albuquerque, NM
          Gateway to Imagination, Farmington Museum, Farmington, NM
          Solo Exhibition, Heritage Gallery, Albuquerque Academy, NM 
          Abstract Catalyst 5, Verum Ultimum Art Gallery, Portland, OR
          Global Warming is Real, Museum of Encaustic Art, Santa Fe, NM
          Surface: Emerging Artists of New Mexico, Harwood Art Center, Albuquerque, NM
          Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
          Collected, Encompass Gallery Exhibition, Harwood Art Center, Albuquerque, NM
2017  11th Annual 12x12 Exhibition and Fundraiser, Harwood Art Center, Albuquerque, NM

          Small Works Exhibition, New Mexico Art League, Albuquerque, NM
2016  Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM

          Sole/Soul: Mixed Media Work, Dr. Haas Podiatry Office, Albuquerque, NM
2015  Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
2013  Collect 10, Center For Contemporary Arts, Santa Fe, NM
          Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
2012  New Mexico Showcase, 516 ARTS Downtown, Albuquerque, NM

2011  Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
2010  Albuquerque NOW - Fall, Albuquerque Museum, NM
2009  Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
2007  Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
2006  Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
2005  12X12 Exhibition and Fundraiser, Harwood Art Center, Albuquerque, NM
          Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
2003  Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
2000  NM Art Therapy Association Show, UNM Art Education Gallery, Albuquerque, NM
1999  NM Art Therapy Association Show, Fisher Gallery, Albuquerque, NM
1997  Openings to the Underworld, Harwood Art Center, Albuquerque, NM
1996  Art Therapy Graduating Show, UNM Art Education Gallery, Albuquerque, NM
1995  Anatomy of Solitude, China Phoenix Gallery, Albuquerque, NM
1988  Women’s Shelter, Environmental Design Gallery, University of Calgary, AB, Canada
          Recent Art Graduates, Virginia Christopher Gallery, Calgary, AB, Canada
          BFA Art Graduates, Gulf Canada Gallery, Calgary, AB, Canada
          BFA Graduating Exhibition, Nickle Arts Museum, Calgary, AB, Canada
          Women’s Show, Little Gallery, University of Calgary, AB, Canada
          Survey Alberta ’88, Alberta College of Art, Calgary, AB, Canada

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Artist Statement and Bio

 

 

ARTIST STATEMENT

Botanicals have long been essential symbols and archetypes in the human imagination. The concept of Biophilia – the innate human love of nature – and the symbiotic and interdependent relationship between plants and humans is a significant motivator for my work. I hope to inspire viewers to consider these ideas as they engage with my images.  In Edward Wilson’s book “Biophilia”, he says the conservation ethic increases when people feel more connected to the natural world.

My strongest childhood memories are of forests and mountains filled with trees and plants, where my imagination and body were sparked alive with feeling. Science now recognizes “forest bathing” – spending time in nature – as important to health and wellness.

I’m fascinated with the widespread human tendency to imbue particular plants with symbolic significance. Throughout history and across cultures, plants have conveyed special meaning. Pomegranate hints at the cycles of nature and the Feminine, and Lotus hints at Buddhist enlightenment. 

I believe that the contemporary disconnect of humans from the natural world is harming the human psyche as much as it is harming the planet. The alarming number of human-caused threats to plants and the environment requires a massive awakening to the importance of biodiversity and conservation. 

By using botanical imagery in my paintings, I endeavor to awaken the viewer’s inner response to archetypal images of the natural world and, at the same time, encourage attention to outer circumstances that affect us all.

Using encaustic, oil paint, collage, and drawing, I merge representational plant forms with suggestive abstract elements. Encaustic medium is made from beeswax derived from plant pollen, a material that depends upon the availability of pollinator plants. In my compositions, I use color interpretively and include a variety of mixed media under and over the encaustic wax layers to create visual depth. I’m interested in an intriguing middle ground, where elements and references become abstract, whisper suggestions, and transition into a mysterious realm: nuanced, poetic, and unknown.

ARTIST BIO

Alison grew up exploring the Rocky Mountains in Canada. Her father taught her about geology and evolution, and her mother, an avid gardener, taught her about plants and how to pay attention to the natural world. Science and Nature became her teachers. At seventeen, Alison began traveling around the world, experiencing vastly different geographies and cultures. For the past seventeen years Alison has taught drawing and painting to high school students at Albuquerque Academy. Alison has a BFA in painting from the University of Calgary, in Alberta, and an MA in Art Therapy from UNM. Her background in outdoor education and art therapy have given her a deep appreciation for the transformative and healing power of both nature and art. Her work is shown at Exhibit 208 in Albuquerque, and has appeared in juried shows at the Albuquerque Museum, 516 Arts Downtown, The Encaustic Museum in Santa Fe, and The Farmington Museum. She just had a solo show at the Harwood Art Center (Oct 2019), and in February of 2020 she will have a solo show at Exhibit 208 in Albuquerque. 

 

EXHIBITIONS

2020  Solo Exhibition, Exhibit 208, Albuquerque, NM
2019  14th Annual 12x12 Exhibition and Fundraiser, Harwood Art Center, Albuquerque, NM
          20 Year Anniversary Group Show, Exhibit 208, Albuquerque, NM
          Biophilia: Our True Nature (solo exhibition), Harwood Art Center, Albuquerque, NM
          Arts Thrive Art Exhibition and Benefit (Oct-Dec), Albuquerque Museum, Albuquerque, NM
          Luanem Gallery Group Show, Menaul School, Albuquerque, NM
          April Price Projects Gallery, Albuquerque, NM
          Group Show, Exhibit 208, Albuquerque, NM          
          Summer Group Show, Exhibit 208, Albuquerque, NM
         
 Spring Group Show, Exhibit 208, Albuquerque, NM
          Corrales Bosque Gallery, Guest Artist, Corrales, NM
2018  December Group Show, Exhibit 208, Albuquerque, NM
          ArtsThrive Art Exhibition and Benefit, Albuquerque Museum, Albuquerque, NM
          13th Annual 12x12 Exhibition and Fundraiser, Harwood Art Center, Albuquerque, NM
          Gateway to Imagination, Farmington Museum, Farmington, NM
          Solo Exhibition, Heritage Gallery, Albuquerque Academy, NM 
          Abstract Catalyst 5, Verum Ultimum Art Gallery, Portland, OR
          Global Warming is Real, Museum of Encaustic Art, Santa Fe, NM
          Surface: Emerging Artists of New Mexico, Harwood Art Center, Albuquerque, NM
          Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
          Collected, Encompass Gallery Exhibition, Harwood Art Center, Albuquerque, NM
2017  11th Annual 12x12 Exhibition and Fundraiser, Harwood Art Center, Albuquerque, NM

          Small Works Exhibition, New Mexico Art League, Albuquerque, NM
2016  Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM

          Sole/Soul: Mixed Media Work, Dr. Haas Podiatry Office, Albuquerque, NM
2015  Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
2013  Collect 10, Center For Contemporary Arts, Santa Fe, NM
          Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
2012  New Mexico Showcase, 516 ARTS Downtown, Albuquerque, NM

2011  Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
2010  Albuquerque NOW - Fall, Albuquerque Museum, NM
2009  Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
2007  Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
2006  Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
2005  12X12 Exhibition and Fundraiser, Harwood Art Center, Albuquerque, NM
          Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
2003  Visual Arts Faculty Show, Albuquerque Academy, NM
2000  NM Art Therapy Association Show, UNM Art Education Gallery, Albuquerque, NM
1999  NM Art Therapy Association Show, Fisher Gallery, Albuquerque, NM
1997  Openings to the Underworld, Harwood Art Center, Albuquerque, NM
1996  Art Therapy Graduating Show, UNM Art Education Gallery, Albuquerque, NM
1995  Anatomy of Solitude, China Phoenix Gallery, Albuquerque, NM
1988  Women’s Shelter, Environmental Design Gallery, University of Calgary, AB, Canada
          Recent Art Graduates, Virginia Christopher Gallery, Calgary, AB, Canada
          BFA Art Graduates, Gulf Canada Gallery, Calgary, AB, Canada
          BFA Graduating Exhibition, Nickle Arts Museum, Calgary, AB, Canada
          Women’s Show, Little Gallery, University of Calgary, AB, Canada
          Survey Alberta ’88, Alberta College of Art, Calgary, AB, Canada

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