Columbus Makes Art Presents Amandda Leigh Tirey on her new exhibition of space and blood
Columbus painter Amandda Leigh Tirey is intrigued by space and the vast biological existence inside and around us. Her large format works in oil appear to freeze the motion of active forms floating in an ambiguous space devoid of gravity, or capture slices of an anonymous aura delicately placed in a petri dish. She creates her own visual science by bringing to life these fictional Liquidscapes and grand nebulous worlds. Amandda is showcasing some of her new paintings in her exhibition, of space and blood, at the Cultural Arts Center June 30 through July 29. Tom Baillieul, CAC Main Gallery Coordinator, formed a Q & A with Amandda Leigh Tirey.
Tom: Your new exhibit is entitled …of space and blood. Why?
Amandda: Being two of my favorite reoccurring characters throughout all of my work, I wanted to concentrate on them equally for this show… both are mysterious and fun to play around with…
Tom: How/when did you get interested in using the microbial world as a basis for your art?
Amandda: I’ve always been fascinated with biology and space. I loved studying anatomy, plant biology and watching every documentary on space and aliens I could get my hands on. I’m forever in love with the cosmos, macro vs micro and every unknown entity in between. My imagination runs amuck with possibilities of creating more ambiguous spaces, where you can’t tell if you’re looking IN or OUT.
Tom: The color palettes used in your works are breathtaking. Are they imagined or based on actual photomicrographs?
Amandda: Thank you! Imagined and pushed to hyper surreal vibrancy for more impact. Not to make things too cartoony but definitely visually pleasing like a cartoon is to a child! You can do a lot with color. It’s a very therapeutic tool.
Tom: You talk about composing each painting free hand using a ‘fine-line edge technique.’ Can you describe this in more detail?
Amandda: I grew up watching my dad pinstripe cars and make signs by hand before everything was from a computer program! He’d lay down his crooked pinkie (mine are quite crooked as well) to stabilize his hand and drag the perfect drop of paint along the edge of his perfectly maintained brush to make every line so “perfectly imperfect.” I utilize this little OCD-ness in every painting I do with the thinking that it makes objects/characters in my paintings more believable and implies a real sense of movement.
Tom: Where are you going next with your art?
Amandda: Continuing on with the paintings that got cut from this show – the homies that didn’t make it and the bad children that got fussy and turned around over the last several months. They will all get my attention again, and with no show or deadline planned for a few years, they will all come into themselves finally. I also have plans for a few larger pieces that are influenced by a few in this show and many small “blood boxes” in the works. Please check out my website for such things: amandda.com.
The Cultural Arts Center invites the public to attend the reception for of space and blood, new paintings by Amandda Leigh Tirey July 7, 6-8 p.m. at 139 W. Main St., Columbus, OH 43215. Amandda’s exhibition runs June 30 through July 29. For more information and/or questions visit CulturalArtsCenterOnline.org or call 614.645.7047.
Columbus Makes Art Presents is a bi-weekly column brought to you by the Greater Columbus Arts Council – supporting art and advancing culture in Columbus. The column is a project of the Art Makes Columbus campaign, telling the inspiring stories of the people and organizations who create Columbus art. Each column will be written by a different local arts organization to give you an insiders look at how #artmakescbus.