Painting is how I stay awake. It is how I process and arrange my thoughts. It is how I come to understand the relationships between things, through rhythm and color.
Over the past several years, I have developed a practice of traveling and oil painting directly from nature. My most profound discoveries are made through this act of plein-air painting. On the field is where I cultivate a deep and sensitive awareness of color interaction. Standing in nature, mixing my palette, and responding to color relationships is a full-body experience for me. It is a portal to a greater, pre-lingual understanding of the connections between things, and my response in paint is a choreography of color notes. I consider these plein-air works my “primary documents,” and I use them in the studio to help calibrate my palette while I construct my larger, panoramic studio paintings. These larger paintings are a collage-like combination of multiple views and experiences. The re-creation on larger canvases allows my body to be wholly involved in the dance-like composing of the scene.
Neddy Award Finalist, 2014. Interview with Sharon Arnold at Cornish College of the Arts, 2014. Video by Reel Grrls, Seattle, WA.