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Lisa Mccutcheon

San Francisco, CA

I draw inspiration from the things around me in my immediate environment and from there I begin to construct a narrative in my large and medium scale collages. Recently this has included my fascination with the feathery beauty and graceful movements of the chickens I have been raising. My interest lies in deconstructing the imagery I collect and create so that it is not so easily discernible and adhering to abstraction along the way. My aim in these collages is to imbue each with rhythm and fluidity and a vast negative space that holds equal importance.

My work has always drawn on something in my immediate environment and then attempts to tease out the larger themes and narratives. This has included the trees in my neighborhood falling victim to heavy pruning to fit into the context of suburban life, for example. My most recent work draws on my fascination and anxiety with the chickens I have been raising and seeks to convey their beauty, graceful movements and strict social hierarchy as well as their aggression and vulnerability to predatory harm. My interest lies not in making imagery that is easily discernible for I am committed to adhering to abstraction along this narrative process. Indeed, it is an ongoing pursuit to create imagery that straddles this line between extremes: sinewy yet diaphanous, representational in moments yet ambiguous in others, painterly yet with mark-making that adheres to drawing. I am interested in the tension of balancing in this place.

All the collage work begins by cutting up old paintings and more recently making new paintings with the intention to cut, reconfigure and layer into a new narrative- one that is this informed by feathers and claws and an ongoing motion. Semi-transparent Mylar is used in the repurposed paintings because it imparts a hazy see-through quality that is crucial to the work. On a formal level, this transparency allows for new relationships to emerge within the imagery as I overlap one piece over the next in the collage process.

Most recently, I have begun including close-up digital photographs of my chickens' feathers that I then transfer to fabric. This new material adds another depth and texture into my collages while continuing my aim to tease out the beauty in this imagery. Moreover, there is this new level of intimacy vis a vis my relations to these animals by taking these close-up photographs.
Wescover creator since 2019

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