“I have always lived in the West—I grew up in Nevada, and have lived in California, Utah, Oregon, California, and Colorado, now calling Wyoming my home. I am moved by the landscape everywhere I travel, but in the West, there is a physical, visual, and spiritual serendipity that has impacted how and why I make art.
I am compelled to interpret the emotion that this landscape evokes in me. What I see around me every day is rare and hopefully preserved. It is an antidote to the uncertain times we find ourselves living in. It was Thoreau who said, “In wildness is the preservation of the world.” Wild things, unpolluted sky and clear waters are a North Star to inspire our human decisions.
I make art in order to reflect moments in the landscape that move me—the way the light is hitting the willows, the ice sparkling on the trees when it is 3 degrees outside, the first bright green buds bursting from the aspen in the spring, the particular colors in a particular sky. In the studio I take these moments and think about the metaphors they evoke. Often other artists are my muse: Shakespeare, the Beatles, Cy Twombly, Jennifer Bartlett, Mozart and Billy Collins are frequent companions in my studio. I am aware every moment of the passage of time, how it manifests in the landscape, what it means to us individually and universally.
The process of encaustic painting involves hot pigment suspended in beeswax, fire and patience. I paint with a torch as well as a brush. The smell of melting beeswax pervades the studio, and is delicious. The painting process involves layering as many as 30 or 40 thin layers, often scraping back through them to find a color that has been laid down earlier in the process. I was a weaver for many years, and this fiber sensibility is apparent in the textures produced. It is not unusual for burned paper and shellac as well as objects such as pins, nails, or watch parts to become part of the painting.
I cannot explain exactly how I get to a particular resolution in the work. I believe every experience I have ever had—growing up at the base of the Sierras in the high desert, living in urban and rural places, reading, seeing, raising a family, and being tossed around by the news of the day finds its way into the work. In the end, the work is always about trying to catch something precious as time speeds by for all of us.”
Pamela Gibson is an abstract landscape painter living and working in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. She holds a BFA from Oregon College of Art and Craft in Portland, Oregon. After weaving for many years, she transitioned to encaustic painting, finding the medium more conducive to interpreting the land around her. Her textile sensibility continues to find its way into her work as a painter.
Recent Solo Exhibitions
2018 Elemental, Turner Fine Art, Jackson Hole
2017 Ode to the Beatles, The Stable, Jackson Hole
2017 Telling Time, The Stable, Jackson Hole
2015 Conversations, The Center for the Arts, Jackson Hole
2015 Time Sensitive: Abstracted Landscapes, Daly Projects, Jackson Hole
2014 Landscape as Metaphor, Oregon College of Art and craft; Craft, Portland
2014 Center of Wonder, Jackson Hole
2017 Our Valley, Lobby of the St. John’s Medical Center, Jackson Hole
Visit Pamela's Website