Whirligig 2017-2018 (click to expand statement)
Swirl & Roil 2016-2017 (click to expand statement)
My paintings explore movement, turbulence, gesture as well as how space folds and moves. Layers and striping bend the two-dimensional space into a churning, vibrating composition, referencing parallel realities, topology, subatomic particles, shifting light and sound waves. I play with figure-ground, sometimes using reflective paints, mostly using scraping and striping to play with how negative & positive spaces take turns being in the forefront. I think a lot about the edges of a painting and use them to suggest environments beyond the picture plane. Movement, structure, line, color, repetition and reflection are important to the work. I frequently pour paint, and more recently, employ gestural brushwork & hand-carved squeegees to pull paint across surfaces creating linear, layered compositions. Scraping and removing paint in striped patterns alters perception and balance while revealing multiple spaces and new layers of information under the topmost layer. Pink has become a prominent color in my new work. After the Women’s March in January, 2017, I pulled out a pink painting I’d started and abandoned in 2014. As a young student, there was a sentiment that to be taken seriously as a woman, a female artist and feminist you had to abandon feminine things and colors (pink!). I did use it here and there in my work but mostly avoided it. After the Women’s March, I embraced pink as a symbol and color of strength. I pulled out that unfinished pink painting & completed it.
Landscape Multiverse 2014 – 2015 (click to expand statement)
I look at microscopic photography and cellular structures, images of the cosmos, diagrams of topology, time/space continuum. Ideas about and visualizing parallel universes have fascinated me for decades. I’ve been inspired by rolling, striped fields and landscape of Northern CA where I live, and most recently by the landscape of rural Burgundy, France where I spent a month as an Artist In Residence (2014). The striped landscape is language to exploit—to work with and against. The paintings’ stripes mimic landscape, but I use the marks to bend space into a churning composition, referencing multiple spaces, realities, topology, subatomic particles, shifting light, sound waves.
Weather Report 2011 – 2014 (click to expand statement)
Invisible Cities 2007-2010 (click to expand statement)
I’m interested in random patterns, networks and self-automating systems and reinforce these explorations by mimicking that concept in my paint application. I let paint travel across wet areas creating a webbed effect, or let different mediums merge, feather into each other or totally repel one another. Patterns emerge that resemble nerve, network or tree branch designs. Thinking about cities as a type of self-automating system led me to my current series of abstract paintings that explore the concept of organized networks versus chaotic patterns.
Chance, gravity and physics control the shape, direction, and distribution of paint. The density of runs and drips builds volume and creates space much like cells or atoms. Interested in unexpected compositions, I engage various paint media to create a stable instability. I experiment with opposites: loud vs. quiet, fast vs. slow, chaos vs. order.
George Lawson writes in 2009: Exhibition 9 in the room for painting will provide many visitors to the gallery with their first in-depth look at the work of Oakland artist Lorene Anderson. Anderson works with a deft mix of casein, acrylic, ink, and mica pigments to create gravity defying imagery with a highly individuated color/light. Her paint application is intuitive though her method is grounded in an intellectual rigor. As a catalyst to creating this series of paintings, Anderson has drawn on a literary reference, Italo Calvino’s 1972 novel, Invisible Cities. She takes her titles from the cities in the book.
Lines, Nodes, Dendrites 2001 – 2006 (click to expand statement)
In my artwork, I am interested in the manipulation of two-dimensional space—a tense, churning, bulging yet subtle space that pulls the viewer in, around, and pushes them back out. A universal theme is macro vs micro: I explore the relationship of seemingly opposite entities. Mathematical spatial configurations, cosmology, topology, physics, and their relationship to biology—both plant and animal inform the work. Through painting, I try to find where all of these seemingly disparate interests intersect—what their common denominator is.
The density of runs and drips builds volume and creates space much like cells or atoms—chance, gravity and physics control the shape, direction, and distribution of paint. Puddles, dribbles, drops and meandering threads of paint are left—I want to let the paint move around, get comfortable, make its own path, ridges and eroded areas; i.e. leave its own mark. I simultaneously work to keep the integrity of the painting intact while I address my concern for images which occur in the process, and the metamorphosis these images undergo as a body of work develops. I strive for the ideal moment when content and composition come together unconsciously; when a fusion of intuition and inquiry occurs. Pictorial concerns are addressed along with conceptual ones—does this painting say anything, is this image/mark crucial to the piece, does this painting answer the questions I have set out to answer? Interested in quirky compositions, I push paint around to create a stable instability. I experiment with opposites: thick vs. thin, light vs. dark, big vs. little, line vs. shape, loud vs. quiet, fast vs. slow, sharp vs. dull, chaos vs. order. It is important for me to have the history of each painting evident, to show a record of perception and observation by the physicality of the paint, by the directions of drips, by layering, and pentimenti.
I further explore conceptual concerns in how I compose or use media in my current paintings, which are broken into several sub-series: Chirality, Automata, Tesselation, Dendrite & Lost Marbles series. Chirality: a molecule is chiral if it is not superimposable on its mirror image. This property is called chirality, from the Greek word kheir for hand. Paintings in this series appear to be symmetrical at first glance—as if the left and right sides are mirror images of one another when in fact, there are many subtle differences. Along with chirality, I’m interested in self-automating systems (Automata) and reinforce this exploration by mimicking that concept in my paint application. I let paint travel across wet areas creating a webbed effect, or let different mediums merge and separate/feather into one another or totally repel each other. Patterns emerge that resemble nerve, network or tree branch designs (Dendrite). I drop marbles wet with ink onto paper and let them move freely; the ink marks record the kinetic energy of the marbles and/or the paper’s support (Lost Marbles). In effect, the paint and marks are organizing themselves according to chance, chemical and physical properties. Tesselation: the geometric meaning of the word tessellate is “to cover the plane with a pattern in such a way as to leave no region uncovered.” By extension, space or hyperspace may also be tessellated. These overarching themes aren’t necessarily restricted to their own series—all paintings address multiple concepts.