Terrie Corbett’s oil and cold wax painting, “Moonflowers: Advent” is in fact a painting within several paintings. Currently, the piece is hanging in her solo show at the Artport Gallery through Oct. 26. On closer inspection, the eye would never guess that buried underneath its topmost layer of yellows, reds and blacks, there are ten different iterations of the work.
Corbett says it is all part of her encaustic mark-making process. She adds and subtracts paint and wax using everything from dental tools, skewers and nails to silicone scrapers, paper towels and her hands. Corbett calls this “making” a painting, as she rarely uses a brush. The end result is almost archaeological in how the work divulges its hidden caverns, textured lines, dips and crevasses.
“The interesting part for me is that it reveals colors and marks that are below the surface,” says Corbett. “Sometimes that helps the painting and you have some color you might not have put in there initially. It’s a history of what you’ve been doing.”
This fall, Corbett’s “Many Voices, One Heart” at the Artport Gallery can be seen in person or virtually in COCA’s online gallery. COCA curates and manages the gallery as part of the City of Tallahassee’s Art in Public Places program. This particular show is unique in its showcasing of encaustic paintings. Corbett uses the ancient technique to layer pigment with melted wax, creating a mixture that fuses with previous layers and becomes “moldable.”
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