ARTIST STATEMENT

I see urban spaces as interesting places of accumulated meanings, layers of materials over time, always changing and in a state of flux. I try to defend this description of urban space through my work, (re-)creating a field of accumulated meanings through the physical application of materials, each layer a temporary interpretation of the landscape.

I am especially intrigued by how inhabitants interact with built urban structures, exploring what it means, looks and feels like to be ‘on the grid’. We so often seek to physically escape the grid, where being ‘off’ the grid is traditionally seen as morally, spiritually and aesthetically better than being ‘on’ the grid. I find that in terms of regional and national identity, we often avoid the grittier urban elements of our culture, preferring rest on quaint Maritimisms (sailboats and fisherfolk), believing that Canadian identity is inextricably linked to mythologies surrounding the Group of Seven and the Canadian wilderness. I try to focus my work on Canadian/Maritime urban life. 

Sarah would like to acknowledge the current and past generous support of ArtsNB. 

 
 

COASTAL (2017)

These works are a close look at the rocky edges of our coastline, both on bright days with white light and calm water, or on dark days with grey water and layers of fog. Created with palette knives and thick paint and wax.

 

NB ART BANK PAINTINGS

Paintings purchased by the New Brunswick Art Bank for their permanent collection, 2017.

Studies completed on site at Courtenay Bay industrial site. 

 

OUR INDUSTRIAL LANDSCAPE II (2017)

Part of an ongoing exploration of the transient nature of our industrial and urban landscape. I am trying to evoke the fluidity of this landscape, reminding myself and my audience that very few elements here remain fixed. The industrial infrastructure itself may be more or less stationary. Everything else - the ships, tankers, train cars, the sky, the water - moves in and out of our view. 

 

 

WIRE ACT (2016)

For Wire Act, I drew ideas from negative spaces and overhead wires in urban environments. I used wire, nails and other found materials to connect one painting to the other, mirroring the ubiquitous overhead lines that bind seemingly disconnected structures in our cities. 

Exhibited at the Saint John Arts Centre, 2016.

 

ON THE GRID

This work is visually influenced by planimetric urban maps and neighbourhood planning, the idea of ‘starting over‘ in a cramped urban environment - whitewashed graffitied walls, razed buildings - as well as the sometimes haphazard use of space in an area that is constantly in motion and flux. 2015.

Many thanks to ArtsNB for supporting this project.