Patricia Aaron


There are themes of home and domestic life in her work, of nature and sites that inspire her and of investigations into numerous materials from paint and wood to steel, wax and fiber. Hers is pluralistic work – abstraction prodded by conceptualism. It catches a viewer off guard while turning painting, mark-making and sculpture into objects and installations that continue to surprise. Aaron was born in Youngstown, Ohio, and seemed destined for a career in business with art as a strong interest. While living in Germany where her husband was stationed, she earned a business management degree from the University of Maryland. But she was studying glassmaking, too, and the degree requirements included a fall semester in London and spring semester in Paris that involved exploring art and theater. When she returned to Boston in the early 1980’s, she studied painting, printmaking and glass at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts. She began exhibiting, and that continued through a move to Maryland, where she also began to teach. Finally, in 1996, Aaron and her family moved to Colorado, and she earned a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Denver, where sculptor and public art installation artist Lawrence Argent was her mentor. She has taught at several area institutions and participated in several residencies. If that seems like a long, roundabout travelogue, it’s not. It’s emblematic. Along the way, Aaron developed skills and interests in numerous mediums, a curiosity about materials, and the impulse for discovery. While at DU this accomplished artist was asked to choose one field in which to concentrate: sculpture or painting. She decided to stick with both, and in the spirit of innovation that characterizes her work, began to find a way to reconcile them. A few years earlier, she had turned toward sculpture, since a flat surface did not offer enough. Taken together, though, the possibilities were endless. In the process, Aaron has created stylish pieces that are straightforward in their approach to combining both forms. She also has ventured into found objects, addressing them so they emerge as something entirely different. A soaring ladder becomes a chair for a very thin giant. Wax and other materials link the concept of home for humans and bees, a riff on the universal need for shelter. Waves of fiber become a pool, and steel panels reflect and reveal sky and sea. Aaron has begun working in encaustics, that lush material that stands on its own while serving as a vehicle for color and form. And it is those two components of abstraction that now engage her, as this intellectual traveler has marked a path that streamlines her search for the confluence of two- and three-dimensional work. Profile written by Mary Voelz Chandler COLORADO ABSTRACT: Paintings and Sculpture Reprinted with the permission of Fresco Fine Art Publications, LLC, Albuquerque, NM Copyright 2009

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