If you’re looking for a thought-provoking art exhibit to visit this semester, look no further than Angela Marino’s show, currently up in the Femlab gallery. Angela is an MFA student at the University of Alberta, focusing on acrylic painting and sharing her personal experiences through art.
Although Angela mainly works with acrylic paint, she also loves using other mediums such as gel transfer, polyacrylic and even fabric to create different effects and layers within her paintings.
We got the chance to ask Angela a few questions about her exhibit and here were her answers!
Can you describe your thought process while creating the work for this show?
“Being influenced by my mother, who was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 2009, my work speaks to my relationship with her and my understanding of who she is now because of the disease. Each piece of work works off of the next, allowing me to learn more and explore ways of narrating my experiences of MS. If the audience knows nothing about what my work is about, I want them to get a sense of empathy for this person I am portraying, and also empathy for me. I depict my paintings so that the viewer can understand how I see and engage with my mother, from my point of view.”
Why do you think you’re so drawn to using gel transfer and other mediums such as spray paint and polyacrylic in your work?
“Materiality is key within my overall practice. The variety of techniques and different finishes of these mediums excites me as a visual artist and also acts as a way to engage in the viewers gaze and body through textures. With the use of different mediums, I am attempting to externalize the internal disease, showcasing the disease in many forms through different spaces. The main and consistent use of gel transfer as a process within my work acts as a way for me to reveal this new skin of my mother, this new identity of her and engage with it. The process becomes an uncanny experience of me recognizing my mother, but revealing her as the other as something unknown or incapable of knowing. In regards with my new exploration of polyacrylic, I am able to engage in a chance process, experience something uncontrollable that allows me to connect to my mother and the way she is unable to control what happens to her.”
Do you find it therapeutic to create artwork with such a personal connection to you and your life or is it difficult to present something so personal to the public?
“The most impactful artists for me are those that connect their works to personal experiences. Being true to yourself is key in the art world. My work, personally, is difficult to talk about, but I choose to embrace the history I have with this disease to show others how it not only affects the person with the disease but those around them. The process of my MFA has presented me with the opportunity to speak up about MS and has allowed me to heal my relationship with my mother and work in collaboration with her. I am truly grateful that I can speak from a personal connection and express my experiences from my point of view.”
Angela’s show is up in the Femlab gallery until March 23rd and is something you definitely won’t want to miss out on this semester!
You can find more information about Angela and her creations over on her Facebook page!