Kelly Sheehan Russo
MSAE ’10 Art Education
My painting often feels like organizing chaos. Trying to let go and see what happens while also trying to have some control and balance. This thought process is familiar in the other major part of my life…parenting four children.
The work often uses elements of shape and space as a representation for life and emotion. Looking into more personal imagery, these can be seen as emotional self-portraits. Sometimes playful and childlike, sometimes more controlled, moody and serious. I am often looking at the convergence of past and present visual contexts and creating a new one.
The imagery has also included vessels or containers. Trying to hold things together, or letting them be, a metaphor for often having to compartmentalize all aspects of life. Stepping back and looking at things from a different perspective, getting a feel for the big picture. Questioning everything all the time. Thinking of time and space throughout the work, the actual marks create a recording of time and the work itself creates a specific space within time. All leading back to navigating life, parenting, and making art.
These paintings have a variety of bold and subtle shapes that take on personalities and emotions that appear in the work and have conversations with each other. I love the idea of a conversation between shape, space and color. Sometimes they listen, sometimes I have to struggle through.