Sunday, June 24, 2012

Utah Arts Festival 2012: Gia Whitlock

Posted By on June 24, 2012, 7:52 AM

Booth #134 has an abundance of cheery sunlight and an artist named Gia Whitlock, whose personality is friendly, agreeable, welcoming and accommodating with a relaxed attitude that makes the visitor feel at home. ---

The art has a look of freshness mingled with intelligence. There is a uniform look to the work that involves two-dimensional media/ collage-like application with text, textures and color, and one wonders if Whitlock is a talented craftsperson or a fine artist. Happily, one discovers she is definitely the latter. She boldly says, “Vegetation and architecture are the maps I use to create my work. These designs begin with a collection of fragments that I continue to gather and create. ... Layers of paint, pencil, and other materials unify bits and pieces into the final image, which stands alone, free of representation.”

This is a unique and imaginative approach that leads to art that is attractive and smart. Vegetation and architecture are two types of essential functioning systems with process and quality. Using the first as a model, the artist is inspired to create a collage of fragments that resonate the functioning, the system, the process and quality of some kind of vegetation. Alternatively, inspired by the second, resonating the same and the quality of architecture, the fullness of the conceptual method is a polarity.

Each is a complexity of design using essential elements of one or the other, one being natural, the other being artificial, and both systematic. The aesthetic is a synthesis of the two, partly natural, partly artificial, and provocatively ripe with implied meaning. The result is something that is inspired and expressively created and austerely non-representational.

The aesthetic, from conception to articulation, is an abstract one leading to unique works of art. Assembled together, one may be distracted by their likeness, but looked at individually, one may appreciate these mixed-media works for their imaginative and inventive articulation of a natural and artificial synthesis of system, mirrored through components of collage.

Booth #134 may be the only conceptual and challenging work of fine art at the Art Festival, yet it is not esoteric or intimidating but lively and appealing. Make sure you stop in to meet the artist, who may explain her aesthetic and tell you more about this curious kind of collage.

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Ehren Clark

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