// Home Studio, Bennington, MA //
Coming to the Northeast by way of San Francisco, Michaela attended Bennington College to study visual art and the influence art objects have on social interaction. After becoming attached to the bucolic landscape and intimate community, she opted to stay in Vermont. After managing an artist's studio for a number of years following graduation, Michaela now balances her own art practice with a career in Merchandising.
Currently, I question the “flatness” of painting through minor interruptions in the construction and bold brush strokes with delicate line work. Instead of questioning the traditional through the lens of medium, I attempt to recreate those impressions through interpreting objects and spaces. My process begins by creating drawings that consider the comfortable and abnormal by placing slightly abstracted everyday objects in organized arrangements. These objects seem familiar but are odd in their scale or color. I then further abstract these drawings by creating paintings on frayed, layered and or folded canvases. These paintings are meant to feel warm, but also odd. They can be interpreted as figures or landscapes. They should change depending on the viewer & viewing environment. Most of all, they are fluid - much like the mediums that inspired my practice from the start.
I use comic books to inspire my color choices. This is an old copy of Spider Woman. I love the balance of the bold colors and delicate black lines. Old comic books are more appealing because the colors are faded, turning previously vibrant oranges and blues pastel. These two spreads in particular were open throughout the 48-hour period and I referred to it constantly.
My canvases perched outside slowly drying as a group.
Walking in the woods & taking a moment outside my studio is an essential part of my process. I have to force myself to take a quiet moment away from my work to think about what I've done. The space outside my house and the woods across the street have become just as important to creating a piece as the materials. I am often antsy and overstimulated, but I am the most calm in the moments I'm wandering outside while on a break from painting.
The doorway leading into my studio from the office in our house.
All my canvases post-stretching. I use layered and frayed canvas on two of the paintings (Hot Mess, When You Fall Down & You Get A Bruise)
The back right corner of my studio. There's a painting in progress on the wall as well as various drawings.
The front right & left corners of my studio & the back of the door. I've had a copy of Body Pressure by Bruce Nauman hanging in my Studio since first going to DIA:Beacon in college. It's almost like my studio's freckle now, it'll be there no matter how my studio shrinks or grows. I also have various images and objects on the wall that are meaningful in some way littered by the computer.
The back wall of my studio. An unstretched panting in progress and my Bennington College Sculpture Studio stool. My friends and I were gifted these stools when we graduated by a faculty member that truly transformed our time at the college.
The back left corner of my studio.
The left wall of my studio.