MFA Studio Art 2020
MA HTCA 2022
"My paintings explore the forces out of our control in the vast natural landscape and how they are tied to the air we breathe and the cells in our bodies. I paint outside on the ground, on cliffs overlooking the ocean or in fields of ash. My kinesthetic and emotional response to the confrontation between the cliffs and the crashing waves or a verdant field and the line where the fire ash ends, makes my painting a meditation on the relationship between spontaneous cycles, both generative and destructive.
Beauty can be found in the toxicity of the environment. After the California fire season of 2020, I started painting with ironized soil and ash taken from the ground at my parent’s home in Sonoma County, where I grew up. I painted by dragging a canvas through the ash just where the line of fire ended in a burned field on my parent’s property. I mixed the natural elements with gold, charcoal, and plastics as representational of the beauty and trauma of this time."
Image: Dragging canvas through ash where the line of fire ended in a burned field. Images courtesy of the artist © Christa Grenawalt