Cover Art: Lisa Congdon
Sami Girl

BOREAS

Artist Statement >>

My latest body of work, Boreas (named for the god of the north wind and winter), evolved out of an obsession with the beauty of the Icelandic landscape. This began after I watched Heima, a documentary on the Icelandic pop group Sigur Rós. The documentary follows the band as they tour through their own homeland, holding impromptu concerts across their countryside. The film documents the stunning raw beauty of Iceland, its rock formations, mountains and valleys. My interest in countries with proximity to the arctic grew. I began researching, painting and drawing the people, landscapes, animals and folk art of other Nordic countries like Denmark, Norway and Sweden, along with iceberg formations in the Arctic Ocean. For years I'd been captivated by the more recent mid-century design from Nordic countries which is a heavy influence in my illustration work. I found myself newly immersed in older traditions and cultures, like the Sami, an arctic indigenous people who have inhabited northern Sweden, Norway, Finland and the Kola Peninsula of Russia since prehistoric times. My discovery of the Sami led me to the exquisite folk-patterned textile work of the Scandinavian and Eastern European countries, and I began reinterpreting these patterns in much of my paintings and drawings. My works are not intended to be realistic snapshots of any period of time, natural setting or people. Instead, I have drawn from a rich array of Nordic landscapes and cultures to create narrative works that cause the viewer to question time and place.

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