Tina Lake
Book of Secrets
acrylic on canvas


For more about Tina:

Waterworks 2017 Aqueous International:

Women in Art exhibition at Seton Hill University:
“I love all beginnings, despite their anxiousness and their uncertainty, which belongs to every commencement. If I have earned a pleasure or a reward, or if I wish that something had not happened; if I doubt the worth of an experience and remain in my past—then I choose to begin at this very second…..” German poet Rainer Maria Rilke wrote those words in his Early Journals and, like many of his writings, they seem to resonate with a deep truth about the creative process. Every new work of art is like a new beginning: a chance to get it right; to explore experiences, visions, and personal faith and ideas through image. In the cycle of paintings I am currently developing, they began with the move into a new studio space. It seemed like a good time to break with the rather photo-realist style of painting I had been working in for some time. These works are different in both subject matter and technique. Teaching art history courses has brought me close to the many images created of Mary Magdalene over the centuries, and while she was the initial catalyst for my beginning this cycle of paintings, broader iconic ideas have emerged about women. Like Mary Magdalene, women as a gender, have suffered and still suffer from the age-old practices of patriarchal societies.

The imagery being explored in these works replaces then the Greek Pantokrator concept for the power of the feminine. The bold use of color was a conscious choice, used in the same vein as the Post-Impressionist artist Paul Gauguin; my new studio was my Tahiti. The eyes are of particular importance to me as a primary vehicle to connect one individual with another. They “cut” through the two-dimensional plane as though they are trapped behind or in the work itself: a tension I find compelling. In terms of technique, I am exploring a method of paint application similar to the German artist Max Ernst called decalcomania, dripping techniques Pollock learned from Ernst, and controlled pouring techniques to achieve a fluid play of colors on the surface of the canvas, in keeping with the concept of the feminine principle of water. These works are vastly different from past works also in that the need to be in control, a requirement in the photo-realistic style, becomes less necessary and would be counter-productive to the organic approach I’m am hoping to develop currently.

Tina Selanders Lake