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2010 Wanderings of the Id, A Suite of Dreams/Nightmares


In my studio,  I usually think in terms of  mini-narratives and metaphors. The formal elements come later, after I begin to work on an image.Leaving specific information out helps make the images more open to the viewer. The finished image may not have the same associations or meanings for viewers, but it might.

Recently I've been venturing into Textille Art, using print processes on cotton rather than paper. This has been really fun, I'm interested to see how far I can go with it--
I respond to both my physical location and the environment of ideas. Expressing contrasts, making comparisons and weaving dichotomies into the meanings of images. I combine traditional and non-traditional techniques, hand-coloring, collage and chine colle.

The natural world is my muse. The complex process of printmaking – from the selection of plate surface to the choice of inks – is inspired by the subject matter. The concerns of our environment, man’s impact on his surroundings, and the future of the planet influence my subject choices.  There is beauty in small moments; my goal is to capture the essence of those moments.

I print at Slugfest in East Austin. You can see more of my work by visiting www.tbondartist.com

My art is developed from a narrative fragmenting of images. My childhood was rich with colorful characters, steel magnolias and a confluence of mixed messages. The consequence of this is a creative ability to find humor in most things. My aesthetics reflect these poetic dichotomies: beauty with calculation, the bitter with the sweet, the humorous with the serious; the literary with the familiar; clandestine moments with collected observations. I enjoy the play of metamorphic connections with the subconscious and senses. Sexual entendre and duality of meanings are explored with symbolic and psychological innuendo. Images are juxtaposed, altered, and accessoried with a tongue-in-cheek attitude to form the focus of my work.
Veronica Ceci is an artist, Master Printer, independent curator and educator living in Austin, TX. Her work has recently been featured in exhibitions at The Manhattan Graphics Center in NYC, The Art Museum of Southeast Texas in Beaumont, TX and Werkstadt in Berlin, Germany.

My experience creating hand-pulled woodblock prints spans over twenty years—a lot of time for the quiet meditation of carving and the splinters that go with it. I print without machinery, using palm gouges to carve and a simple wooden spoon as my press. I only make one print because in our times of material and media abundance only one is necessary. I work reductively, carving and printing in stages so that each block is reduced or destroyed as the image is produced and created. Each image remains singular, thus sacred, reflecting one experience in time.


The many contrasts inherent in these woodblock prints keep me engaged—the fast gestural line that is carved slowly, a random splash that takes hours to create, the raised rough wood becoming a dark smooth inked line, the obsessive pattern throughout providing both unity and noise.


Through my imagery I seek to obfuscate, deconstruct, reassemble and transform my everyday relationships with the shapes and patterns of the world. I seek images which deliberately set on edge the associations we bring to forms as our perceptual associations drive our entire way of thinking. I am not a symbolist nor a pure abstractionist: I use forms which might mean many things, have several names, or be both whimsical and terribly dark at the same time. The images serve as a metaphor between the visual impression of something and the conjuring of its name. Each image is an invitation to explore our ever-changing stream of perceptions and from that experience gain a type of wisdom for which there are no words.


I strive for Magritte's basic intention, to make art with a "disturbing poetic effect."ť My work presents exotic subjects in the drama of black and white, or the subtle monochromatic tones of printers' inks. The prints are based on my photos of real places and slightly mysterious objects that are embraced by a post-apocalyptic anxiety, which induces a state of psychological unease in the viewer. The images raise questions, but knowing the back story doesn't necessarily provide comfort. The result is by turns intimate, earthy, fragile, universal, and contemporary. The images are full of the organic subtlety showing the naked beauty of weathered rock and plants, contrasted with man-made architectural elements. The organic elements complement the man-made. In purely aesthetic terms, the works use an interplay of tones and textures, with formal qualities of composition in the arrangements of objects under the viewer's gaze. The unfamiliar induces a state of ambiguity mixed with a strange longing or nostalgia. The camera captures temporal events, figurative and narrative, fragments in the cycle of life and death. History is revealed in multiple layers with an underlying order and inherent drama exposed in contrast and detail, painterly and sculptural at the same time.

My work celebrates the spirit of the people and places I have encountered. Whether this is represented through color, choice of line carved, etched, molded, drawn or painted through the conscious use of mark making via time honored traditions of printmaking techniques, I am interested in honoring the subject. So much is required in developing an image; it serves as a meditative device. The push and pull during the creation process is part intuitive, reactionary, and peace maker.
I find myself combining the past and present on a routine basis in my work. How may I provide the viewer with a snapshot that encapsulates people, place, time? How may I engage the visceral response of the audience? The stories I have been witness to, the beauty I have encountered and the decay of the previously celebrated: all find a home in my heart and art. My work has been described as"visual haiku.

I discovered printmaking relatively late in life when I took my first printmaking class in 2001. I like the process and the surprises inherent in printmaking. I am continually amazed that I am able to overcome the mess and the dirt that are part of printmaking, but I like the creativity the process brings about. 
I often use my own handmade paper for my printmaking, and I love how the unique characteristics of the paper influence the final print. I am also a gardener, and this is perhaps why I like to use images that appear in nature in my artwork (and in some ways my art is an extension of my gardening). 

I was living in New Mexico when a fortuitous requirement of printmaking coursework for my graduate program in art therapy led me to expression in another medium. Since that time I have been exploring printmaking and creating soft ethereal-like inspirational images. The circle or circular movement can often be seen in my artwork. The circle is a universal symbol with extensive meaning--a continuous symbol that has no beginning and no end. Throughout my life I have created circles, benefiting from the sense of comfort, peace, and total integration.

How I feel when I am making art is perfectly described in what Don Miguel Ruiz says: "When you are in your creation and you are doing what you love to do, you become what you really are again. You are not thinking in that moment; you are expressing.” I love being in that space where I am not really thinking, I am expressing what I am feeling inside. One could say that I make art to please the eye and touch the soul.

My art is a gift from my Father. I am blessed beyond measure. It is indeed a part of who I am.

Experimentation with various mediums and the manipulation of those mediums is a driving force which provides interesting puzzles in need of solving. When I am in that place...experimenting and trying to solve that puzzle...I am joy filled.

 
I also like to work in series. It is freedom giving. Some series never make it past the first in the series, but had their beginning with a series in mind. Series tend to allow for building. A new concept is not needed each time I approach a blank paper or canvas. There is already something their awaiting to be built upon.

The dance of the brush, the roll of the brayer, the work in progress;  soul satisfying!

I currently create nature-related abstract prints. The line work images represent a small part of a natural being, such as an insect. As I work to create these images, I abstract them as I am sketching before I begin cutting my plates.

I also have created a series of prints based on imagery in an old book about geography: Map, Mail Stops, Contour, and Flight Path

And, I occasionally create a representational print such as Medium Brew, for the 2016 WPA Trade.

I have a fascination with nature and I love collecting seeds, bones, and oddities I find in the streets. These often inspire ideas along with images I dream. The evolution of those ideas through drawing and the solar intaglio printmaking process is challenging but exciting. Imagination plays a big part in the formation of images and I find it satisfying when it all comes together.

I view my work as a collaboration with nature. I make handmade paper with plant materials from my garden. My photographs are also mainly taken in my garden or on hikes. I am fascinated with symbols and intricate patterns that, to me, give glimpses and insights into to the great mysteries of life.

Trade Portfolio Details
CONTACTS:
Chair: Belinda Casey
Co-Chair: Kathleen M C. Clark
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The deadline for this event (6/12/2010) has passed.
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