Janet Eskridge, Encaustic Assemblage: 8/29/11 - 10/7/11
"The art I make is strongly influenced by my childhood, where I lived in the woods of Houston, Texas. I spent hours gathering, arranging and hiding treasures, such as sticks, feathers and rocks, among the trees. From a very early age, I worked in empty defined spaces to create something new.
I work in old boxes. I am fascinated by their untold histories, their scent and the way they look and feel. I combine old paper, handmade books, maps, objects and photographs-all poignant fragments of someone’s story. I incorporate encaustic, a mixture of beeswax and resin, into each piece.
For me, artmaking is an intuitive process. I do not have preconceived outcome in mind when I begin. I start with an empty box, adding and removing objects and images, until I have a sense that they belong together. This process is repeated throughout the development and completion of each piece.
The space within each box becomes a little world that the viewer is invited to enter and explore. I am intrigued by the metaphors of hidden places, layers and openings. It is my hope that this work will inspire others to question and examine their own private worlds. Themes in my work are birth, re-birth, death, transformation and the struggle to make meaning of the journey.
My art is greatly impacted by my career as an art therapist, much of which was spent working with patients and their families at Children’s Hospital and Medical Center in Omaha, Nebraska."
-- Janet Eskridge