Out There by Patty Cateura
Opening reception: April 25, 2014, 6-9pm
Windy Inlet, 2014
Acrylic on canvas
48" x 60"
Brooklyn, NY – March 31, 2014 – The 8 paintings and three collages by Patty Cateura in Out There explore ideas about space and the power of nature. Thoughts about the transforming power of landscape and the rejuvenating qualities of nature have roots in both Eastern and Western philosophies, which Cateura combines with the visual language of minimal abstraction. Her compositions of stacked, flat spaces and jarring color relationships are abstractions derived from her intimate relationship with nature and the experience of time spent in remote landscapes hiking and camping. Cateura “hopes to counter the passive intake of images that bombard us daily by enticing the viewer to engage and find respite…”
Like the Hudson River School painters, the first American artists to be profoundly effected by notions about freedom, individualism and transformative influence of nature explored in the American transcendental movement of the 19th Century Cateura’s artistic aim is to “evoke nature’s vibrancy, power, scale, and stillness as an arresting visual pause…” Derived from memories of the shapes of mountains, plains, valleys and vistas each composition is painstakingly worked out through cut paper collages before any of her hand-mixed pigments reach the canvas.
Similar to the work of artists associated with the Hudson River School, the Zen gardens of Japan link space and spirituality. A sense of place is inextricably coupled to the experience of moving through the space itself. In Japanese, the word Ma roughly translated means the space between two structural parts and is experienced progressively through intervals of spatial designation. More importantly Ma is a consciousness of place, a simultaneous awareness of form and non-form derived from an intensification of vision. So, Cateura’s choice of flat, stacked spaces found in traditional Chinese and Japanese painting combined with intense fields of color and basic geometries of minimal abstraction is intended, similar to the vistas in Japanese gardens, to concentrate our visual experience and invoke the experiential qualities and effects of space and nature itself.
The simplicity of her work is intended to evoke the nobility and purity of nature as a source for rejuvenation and space for relaxation from the intensities of our technologically driven contemporary lives. With the stark linear elegance and open emptiness of space in each composition Cateura offers the viewer visual and emotional access to a metaphorical experience of space and time.
She received her BA From Oberlin College in Oberlin, OH and her MFA in 1993 from the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, MD. In 1994 she studied at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Skowhegan, ME. Patty Cateura maintains her studio at the Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts in New York City.