Using blackout-curtain fabric as her canvas, things happen to the pigments on its surface which suggest skin, parchment, old maps, architectural paper; things happen to the paint because of the material: for instance, blackish acrylic tint blurs at the top — which leads artist Jackie Reeves onwards to expand the work’s realization. The material, process, and ideas evolve and change together, one inspiring the other, interacting with each other so that she is never quite sure what accident or intention will birth what result. The joy Reeves takes in her art is this kind of spontaneous discovery, of play. “It’s what I, and my siblings have been doing, since we were children in Canada; it’s what I know how to do best.” She likes not being in control. What results from this play is powerful and moving.
Reeves, formally trained, and experientially self-taught as well, started out as a graphic artist. In one phase of her commercial career, she created trompe l’oeil paintings for clients. In another she painted huge murals on the sides of public buildings. When she became a studio artist, creating her own original art 12 years back, her experiences formed a palimpsest of techniques, using drawing, painting, and those techniques of mural painting and trompe l’oeil, to create her own intuitive vocabulary and voice.
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