'You haven't answered me,' said Alice.
Shakespeare shook his head and sunk his chin into his ruff, making him look more owl-like than ever. 'I have written about other worlds often enough. I have said what I can say. There are many kinds of reality. This is but one kind.'
He stretched out his hands to indicate the walls, carpets, tapestries and stuffs around him. 'But, Mistress, do not be been seen to stray too far from the real that is clear to others, or you may stand accused of the real that is clear to you.'
Elucious and #eluciousdesign are the artistic noms de guerre of Dr. Stephanie Studzinski. While I do not restrict myself to genres or materials, at present, I consistently create within two mediums: paint and wood. I create paintings using acrylic paints on wood panels and I create functional furniture from reclaimed wood. I create my furniture as a commentary on single-use culture and simply, because I hate wasted potential. This too is why I paint: to open the eyes of others to the rich potential and vital variances within and around us which are too often ignored, or worse disregarded, decried, or wasted.
Too easily (post)modernity operates under the rouse that the world and its contents are fixed, known, stable, and anthropocentrically defined. I disagree. The world and its contents are eternally in flux: ever-evolving (or perishing) together. The only things ‘fixed’ are the outdated worldviews of those who perceive humanity as imago dei and/or the sole standard bearers of life, intelligence, sentience, communication, and value. In reality, more is unknown than known and too easily imagination and difference (as intrinsically valuable assets and tools of discovery) are repressed and compressed under the weight of a mythical global monoculture which endlessly chants claims of human independence and mastery.
However, humanity is interdependent, consisting of and living within a rich network of nonhuman life which allows us to flourish physically and mentally. This, however, is not portrayed by nor conveyed within what is generally referred to as day to day reality. I therefore present a PopSurreality to counter this. ’Pop‘ because it utilises the bright eye-catching colors of advertising and ‘surreality‘ because it does not present (what is presumed to be) a mimetic reality. However, my paintings do not offer an escape or shy away from this troubled world. After all, the function of Art is not to please, but to recognise, challenge, and dissect—vivisect if necessary—as my paintings demonstrate. In short, my paintings challenge greyscale monoculture reality by depicting a seemingly unimaginable surreality bursting with color and vivre. In this way, my paintings disrupt everyday narratives and inspire new divergent ones.
To exist in the world is be part of something one cannot control. To be swept endlessly along a river, sometimes floating sometimes gasping, staring to see as far as one can see but never sure of what one sees. As an artist, I can only struggle to influence—-to show what I can see, and hope to catch the eye of the headless Gorgon of Culture and hold her attention long enough to shine a light in a different direction. In short, I paint because I am an imperfect being existing in an imperfect world burning with potential. My paintings are distillations of sensemaking. They are sirens screaming of different ways of being, seeing, living, relating, reckoning, and even hoping.
To appreciate my work, I recommend viewer‘s clear their minds and meditate on small sections of each painting as they allow their eyes to slowly scan the surface. As the eye travels, it creates a disorienting effect due to the painting’s shifts in perspective and the complex interactions of the inhabitants of each landscape. Surrealscapes further physically challenge the fixed boundaries of their frames by expanding off them into mimetic reality via their magnetised 3D clay attachments.
I take inspiration from the natural world and often adapt its forms. All my art begins by admiring elements found in nature. I paint as a sculptor, working with rough shapes and whittling them down. Fine tuning the curves as I go, changing the colors as the painting itself evolves. If you look closely, you can observe that my canvases are thick with paint as they are painted many times over before arriving at their final fixed state. I create rough drawings of each surrealscape in order to ensure the balance of the painting is maintained throughout the lengthy process of creation which can take months if not years to fully populate. In this way, Painting is also a method of discovery, helping me to reveal hidden truths to myself and others.