Photo Abstraction

Photo Abstraction, Neon and argon gas in glass tubing, wooden box, metal supports, electrical components, 68" x 68" x 8.25", 2013

Originally from Vancouver Island, Jill Allan received her MFA from Bowling Green State University (Ohio) in 2013 and her BFA at the Alberta College of Art and Design (Calgary) in 1999. She is the recipient of several awards and scholarships such as the Dr. Alice E. Wilson Fellowship form the Canadian Federation of University Women 2012 and The Katzner Research Grant from BGSU 2011, BC., among others. Her work is in the collection of The Canadian Craft Museum Vancouver, The Alberta College of Art and Design in Calgary, and The Corning Museum of Glass in Corning NY. Currently, Jill Allan lives in Calgary, Alberta and is an instructor at the Alberta College of Art and Design.

In her own words:

I think of myself as a hybrid: designer - craft maker - artist. I love the idea of crossover. My roots are in the craft tradition of vessel making but more and more now I want to make work that is sculptural and expressive, drawing on my life experiences for inspiration. There is a strong connection between my 2D and 3D artwork. The themes present in my drawings and photographs cross over into the objects and installations I make; informing the surface detail, form and mood of my work. When I use glass I can make a shape with light, contain light, distort light, reflect light and project light. For me it is all about light, whatever materials I am using.

About this work:

This work is based on a blurry photograph of a gift card display. I use photographs as a way to collect inspiration; texture, pattern, form, colour, light and mood. I think of my creative process as drawing because of the way I look at my subject and break it down into, shapes of shadow and light, texture and line, which is also the way I look at subject matter that I want to render realistically. One of the ways I do that is to blur the focus, by squinting my eyes or taking an out of focus photograph. Instead of making a realistic rendering of my subject matter I am pausing to explore its raw unrefined qualities.
     In this work I am drawing on the rectangular structure of the organized, colorful envelopes and cards stacked in the display. The blurred focus of the camera diffused the edges of the bright cards making them appear to be fuzzy and glowing. When I work this way I am thinking in formal terms about the aesthetics of the piece and also about how the final work might make the viewer feel.

Jill Allan at Gilded Pear Gallery

This page was first displayed
on February 06, 2018

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