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Ascha Drake

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My work expresses the complexities, contradictions, and reconciliation of opposites; inside/outside: push/pull: vulnerability/assertion: encapsulation/freedom: evidence/erasure: delicacy/roughness: spirit/flesh: universality/subjectivity. I have concentrated on working with overlapping veils of layered patterns and textures. Some patterns are intricate, while others are simple series of lines separating deep layers from one another.

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I have developed a multiple-work approach in my work. Often I am working on several pieces at the same time, laying down a layer on one piece, and then moving to peel something from another. This process enables a spontaneity and a dialogue between the pieces which sets up a dynamic tension. I stand over the pieces while I work; applying, excavating, piercing, puncturing, incising, pounding, brushing, binding, taping, revealing, and concealing. This process is both intense and physical.

There are images that contract and constrict. Some forms bump forward while others are shielded; embalmed in a layer of translucent film. The work requires patience. Eyes wander and then find a place to rest. After which an unfolding occurs, and the viewer can be taken by material, image, pattern, texture, and depth of field. When looking at the work, elements appear such as sensitivity to music, lines which quiver and throb, white dots which are suspended in a cloud of blue, botanical shapes colliding with orbits, and specks that flutter in and out of a misty wall of striated lines.

There are also references to nature, kinetic film, flesh, and the body. Some pieces may beckon the viewer to touch. Other pieces ask the viewer to stand back. The encaustic becomes a translucent layer of “skin” stretched over a surface embedded with references, pulled taut to express a relationship to cells, plasma, epidermal layers, and fluids. Often these forms are begging to be released, although the skin holds them captive, arrested, and embalmed as personal fragments documenting life experience.

1. Stripe, 48 x 36 x 3 inches. Encaustic, oil, tape, and graphite on wood. April 2003
2. Untitled 3, 24 x 18 x 3 inches. Encaustic, collage, and acylic on wood. February 2004
3. Swarm, 24 x 18 x 3 inches. Encaustic, ink, and acrylic on wood. March 2004
4. Untitled, 48 x 36 x 3 inches. vellum, graphite, and spray paint on wood. May 2004
5. Untitled 4, 12 x 12 x 3 inches, Encaustic and tape on wood. February 2003
6. Untitled 2, 8 x 8 x 5 inches, Encaustic on wood, March 2004

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Ascha Drake
New York, NY
New York
North America

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