Janis Kirstein is a painter, photographer, and writer, but primarily a painter. She combines a mixture of media and collage, including acrylic, pastel, colored pencil, & Photoshop, Sumi-E Ink and Japanese Rice paper. In the work we see here, the energy is loose and spontaneous, at times nearly explosive, betraying the level of discipline required in both the composition and the technique.
“I love making collages,” states Kirstein. “Action painting has been my joy for more than 30 years and continues to this day, today, using Sumi-E ink and a Haiki brush. I add torn scraps of Japanese rice paper and combine a variety of media including paint, watercolor, graphite, ink, colored pencil – even glitter, all to capture the free flowing creative energy that surrounds me at any given moment.”
“To achieve the atmospheric abstraction seen in my work, I make use of transparent layering. My canvases and paper works range in size, the scale of my pieces ranging from my use of the Nano image to images of outer space. That means all realities are visible simultaneously, which creates a paradox or sense perceptive omnipotence within you, the perceiver; much like being able to see all dimensions of reality within one gaze.”
Kirstein speaks of her work using cosmic nomenclature suggesting a meaningful spiritual component. Abstraction opens the mind to welcome a subjective interpretation, and it can be fascinating to imagine the range of response, yet the calculated choice made by the artist even when they are giving themselves over to the organic experience of creative expression will usually be a guide for the viewer.
Written by Keith Waits. Entire contents copyright © 2018 Louisville Visual Art. All rights reserved. In addition to his work at the LVA, Keith is also the Managing Editor of a website, Arts-Louisville.com, which covers local visual arts, theatre, and music in Louisville.