Landscape has provided a rich tableau for artists throughout its history, from the awe-inspired sublime of the 19th century to the manipulation of the land itself in the 1960s and 70s.
Lisa Wood's photo-based works tread the line between both, depicting the undulating, abstracted forms of natural phenomena as well our ordered yet otherworldly interventions within the natural environment.
Wood was raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in the 1970s and 80s before moving to Idaho, where she has lived for the past twenty-five years. Wood’s trek west, in a way, paralleled American artists of the 19th century seeking an escape from the industrialized cities that obscured the natural environment.
Her studies of Thoreau and Emerson reinforced her interest in natural space and its reference to the greater whole. However, for Wood, a female growing up on the outskirts of a traditional, blue collar steel town grappling with recession and hardship, she is also concerned with the traditional American ideal of work and community exemplified by grit, discipline, optimism and loss.
These seemingly disparate experiences – reverence for nature yet a deep experience with American industrialism - come together in her work in surprising ways: wide-open spaces at once orderly and disorienting, watersheds shaped by glacial forces, marbleized by momentum, ice forms born from violence, softened by time.
Wood’s vast landscapes offer a guide to place and environment taking what is mundane and presenting another viewpoint, one with a strong visual sense of place underscored with stillness and beauty.
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