A CLEVER USE OF CONTRASTS
The creative urge has inhabited artist Patricia Kramer for as long as she can remember.After exploring a variety of avenues, she finally found a form of expression her imagination totally embraced : painting. From fashion design to jewellery and lamp creation, the artist was never at a loss for ideas on how to further her inventive passion. She contrantly endeavoured to explore new opportunities and live out her dreams, but commercial constraintes hindered her need for expansion and she craved more liberty. These varied experiences gradually outlined the path she would follow, as she gained confidence in herself, until it became evident that her plan of life could only be reslized throuh painting. Having devoted all her tyme exclusively to her art, this native of Holland, who holds a Bachelor of fine Arts from the University of Québec in Three-Rivers and a college diploma in fashion design from LaSalle College, is finally able to find her true persona and reach her full potential.
If art previously represented for her simply a way to express herself, wich could take various forms, it has now become a profound desire to participate in creating a better world by infusing it with a little more beauty. «When I paint, I seek personal harmony so that I may be able to produce a serene piece of art that makes me feel good, a feeling that I may then share with others.» Her paintings invite the viewer to partake in an intimate fantasy that testifies to the uniqueness of each soul participating in an inner and true encounter.
In a semi abstract stryle, which has evolved overtime, the artist today suggests natural or urban landscapes where a broad horizon let’s us breathe and lifts our spirit with a sentiment of freedom. The various elements are but alluded to , so as to allow enough space for vast interpretation in accordance with a multitude of visions. «In figurative painting, the mind inevitably intervens and analyses in an effort to understand. It’s more limiting. My approach is mainly instinctive. I simply try to be receptive to what’s going on while exercising as little to what’s going on while exercising as little control as possible so as to enable whatever is building itself on canvas to emerge.» It’s a matter of being present an d open, first to oneself, then to the energy in movement witch slowly gives form to matter. Finding balance, knowing when to let ideas sprout and when to repress them, remains a constant challenge that requires unison of gesture and mental state.
Hihly attractes to the rawness of land art, wich resonates with her attachment to the Earth, she starts integrating rocks, pieces of wood , bark, twigs, bits of hay and even pieces of ciment into her works, which give direction to the composition. «I like to usereal objects instead of simply representing them. It creates a more authentic vibration. During my outings, I still pick up pieces that I feel I could use, but my circle of friends are now providing me with such a variety of elements, that I hardly need to look for more myself. I dry them all, clean them, sand them, when needed, apply a coat of protecting varnish.» In parallel wich her favourite theme, which is nature, coexists an urban dimension wich represents action, trend, modernity and human contact. These wo universes meet and intertwine on occasion, as they do in real life.
Althought some touches of colour, red or shades of ochre, punctuate the works here and there, her otherwise rather neutral palette generates a soft and appeasing atmosphere conducive to introspection. The work however does not lack character, with its clever use of contrasts. The luminosity of pearl white is often in opposition with black, wich anchors and empowers the subject, and embellished witch shades of grey. Mat finish is set against glossy finish, relief and texture neighbour flat and smooth planes, always in keeping with aim for simplicity and streamlining. Since her use of mixte media implies of drying stages, she works in juxtapostion on a number of pieces at a time that are at different stages of completion. Thus being able to take a step back permits her to view her work in a new light and detect areas that may need to be worked on later, while avoiding overabundance of detail. «I have to be careful not to go too far to ensure the atmosphere remains Zen. One must learn when to stop. To do less, to simply let go.» With acrylics, she uses brushes, sticks, painting knives or even rags, which yield as many different results in all subtlety while still expressing a certain vitality. Patricia Kramer, who favoured mostly horizontal formats for some time, has lately been dabbling with verticality, enthusiastically envisioning new possibilities that are still aligned with her artistic approach. Welding having been part of her academic training and feeling some affinity with metal, she dreams of one day being able to cast small bronze fragments that could be integrated to her works, notably for their rustic aspect. Established in the Mauricie region, she has actively been working for some time at gaining local repute and often takes upon herself to otganize artistic events that will increace her visibility and hopefully lead to success. All that’s left for us to do is be on the lookout for were and when she next reappear.
Patricia Kramer’s works are at Suite Soixante on Rue des Forges in Tree-Rivers, Ambiance gallery in Old Montréal and as well as Baron Lafrenière gallery in Québec city.
Lisanne Le Tellier
For Magazin art winter 2014