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ERIN CLARK

Artist // Owner/instructor Artcie Studio
b. 1980
2003 Graduated from Massachusetts College of Art & Design, Boston; BFA
I currently work out of my studio in Hamilton, MA

INSPIRATION   

I was born and raised on the Northshore of Massachusetts.  The coast has always been my playground, and is the backdrop for many of my memories growing up. I love traveling and exploring different places, but I always find myself back in this beautiful landscape, surrounded by the scenes that I live and work in daily.  The constant movement of water, the push and pull of the tides, the rich layers and textures found near the sea – is where I feel at home, and is rhythm that drives my work.   

Beyond the natural world, I’m deeply inspired by a few artists who forever changed my lens. Richard Deibenkorn's "Ocean Park" series opened my world. The endless depth of color and simple compositions of his work could leave me staring for hours.  The way I see, feel and create art is greatly influenced by his work.  I am also drawn to the clean lines and open/airy feel of Cliff May architecture and Scandinavian design.  I love uncomplicated, minimalist lines that allow for art to express itself fully.

Much of my formal education is in sculpture and 3D form, and that has greatly influenced the way I approach my painting.  Working in a large scale - moving feely around the work - is where I am most comfortable.  I love to build layer upon layer, often overworking my paintings before making a conscious decision to tone them down to a finished piece.  I once had a painting professor tell me, "knowing when to stop is the most important part of painting.” This is something that has stayed with me, and a constant thought while working on a piece.  I see it as an ongoing dance on the fine line between underworked and overworked.  But in the end, I think I am always trying to identify the stillness in the creative storm.  

Art can define the arena, as well as expand it. An artist can build a box around something, or intentionally go outside of it. This is why I love working in these mediums, and have devoted my life to teaching and making art. Sometimes I like to know where I’m going, but sometimes I don’t. That is the freedom of art.