Lydia Bodnar-Balahutrak

"You Don't Say!"

October 5 - October 29, 2019

Redbud East Gallery

Opening Reception

Saturday, October 5, 2019
6pm to 9pm

Artist Statement:

"Collage is a way of piecing things together. It’s at the heart of my creative process. Seemingly disparate words and images come together, take shape, and a fable-like parable unfolds.

I collect newspaper articles, photos, and cartoons, significant monetary currency, handwritten letters, postage stamps and maps, and all sorts of ephemera that reference meaningful cultural and socio-political issues. At some point I select and arrange these fragments onto paper or canvas. The collages, large and small, build up over time and eventually become grounds upon which I paint and draw, using various approaches. Imagery evolves from the layering, erasing, and veiling of paint, wax, ink, charcoal, and other materials. Some elements are concealed, others revealed.

The process perpetuates a dialogue between the text and rendered imagery. As I add and subtract items, I also investigate the written word and the general nature of disseminated information. I examine the nature of print media and see how narratives can be manipulated, disguised, and hidden. How does what we say and don’t say impact our knowledge of events? How does language conceal or misrepresent truth? Who decides what is suppressed and what is broadcast?

A 1996 visit to the Chernobyl Zone in Ukraine left me with a lasting impression of nature’s beneficence, of hope and beauty. Despite everything, even in the face of deception, destruction, and loss, nature heals, regenerates, and creates anew. Her tangles of trees, nests, and animals are now recurring motifs in my work – notes of grace and whimsy. Whether solemn or comical, metaphoric or naturalistic, they are meant to express wonder and invite discourse."

© Redbud Gallery  -  303 East 11th Street  -  Houston, TX 77008  - (713) 854-4246