My practice engages an ongoing investigation into the topography of landscapes and cartography style imagery using grids as recurring motifs. During my Art History studies at McGill University, I was attracted to the work of two artists, Agnes Martin and Joan Mitchell. Martin for her spiritually based, serene grid paintings and Mitchell for her highly gestural, emotionally charged landscapes. The grid patterns in my paintings, recall forms found in architecture and patterns found in aerial views. By using an aerial perspective in my work, I remove myself from the ground level and observe the imagery from an elevated view which becomes a form of escapism from urban life and in a sense a mindfulness meditation. My dreamlike, imaginary territories capture the energy and tension of urban sprawl and the loss of open space and evoke images of maps, satellite views and architectural structures. My desire is to create a dialogue about sprawl, migration and our encroachment into nature and space.

 

I use an average of fifteen layers per panel, scraping back and repainting until the desired patterns are achieved. My paintings are created with either acrylic based mixed media or encaustic paint. I’ve been using encaustic paint for many years because this ancient medium offers unique textural and luminous possibilities and allows an artist to carve into the works like a sculpture.

My newest work, New Frontiers, is inspired by NASA's solar system explorations. This series was created after examining topography on planets and moons and thinking about the possibility of space tourism, exploration of other planets to search for potential life and space colonization. 

© 2017 by Anastessia Bettas