Feb 19, 2020

Abbey Prevot - 2-D oils

Biography As a young girl, I can remember painting watercolors with my mother on our kitchen table in Halfway, Oregon. I have distinct memories of the smell of paint and the way I clumsily painted trees compared to my mother's elegant shapes on the paper. Growing up in an artist's home, I had drawing in my blood. I always had a deep love of drawing and of art history, but it wasn't until I went to college that I felt I became an artist in the Art Department of George Fox University, where started to regularly paint. As an art major at university, I developed a loose style of painting, and I loved to paint cityscapes, landscapes, and figures. I found color to be the strongest element of expression in my artwork, and I began to work mostly in watercolors by the time I graduated in the spring of 2002. For the next couple years in 2003 and 2004, I continued to paint as I worked towards a teaching degree. I received a Masters in Education in 2004, and the subsequent year I began to teach art and humanities at Pine Eagle High School in Halfway, Oregon. I continued to teach there for the next five years, all the while continuing to paint and occasionally show my work. In 2009, I moved to Portland, Oregon, where I worked for two years part-time, and continued to paint, mostly scenes from Portland. At this time, I also started to be instructed in icon painting and egg tempera, which is a completely new avenue of art for me, and one in which I plan to continue. Last spring, 2011, I moved to Seattle, Washington, where I have done most of the paintings for this current show. I recently was married this past December, and I currently reside in Bellevue, WA, with my husband. Artist Statement As an artist, I have always used paint as a vehicle to express images of the world around me in places I have lived and memories I have created. The images I collect are usually from common surroundings of the environment I am currently living in, so my canvas becomes somewhat like a visual autobiography. When I explore my surroundings, move to a new place or travel, I constantly see paintings in the beauty surrounding me. When I sit in front of the canvas or watercolor paper, the memory of the environment from which I visited comes to light. How does the atmosphere make me feel? What are the people like who live in this place? What kind of emotions does this city create in me? What colors do I see in this milieu? In technique, I try to express visual excitement and depth by exaggerating color relationships in compositions. I try to make the obvious vague in my work and focus on “turning up the volume” in color and texture. I work in both oils and watercolors with a loose brush and vibrant, rich colors. I enjoy oils for their pliability, viscosity, and depth. Watercolors, on the other hand, can give me similar depth of color when used richly, but I can work faster with them and react spontaneously with the image on the paper. I have recently moved to the Puget Sound area, and I have enjoyed the different scenery of this wet and cold area compared to Oregon, where I have lived most of my life. The images in this current collection are taken from places in Seattle that I have visited often. What I noticed first about Seattle is the color. When I think of Seattle, I see cold blues, pinks of the skyline, and emerald greens of the lights at night. I see fish markets and striped shirts, coffee shops and transient people wearing suits in the city. Seattle, a port city, has many people coming and going, as compared to hometowns in Oregon where I feel much more comfortable. However, the edge that Seattle gives me awakens fresh feelings: some of unease, and some of surprise to find unexpected beauty in a darker landscape.