Presenting Natural Elements in New Unusual Ways
By Renée Phillips, Director of Manhattan Arts International
“The inspiration for much of my work comes from nature and female imagery, both of which to me express strength and vulnerability, power, mystery, and creative potential.”
Elaine Alibrandi is an internationally exhibited award-winning artist. She approaches her mixed media art with daring innovation and with an adventure for discovery.
In addition to creating art, Alibrandi writes poetry, which has been published in over 50 magazines and literary journals.
The inspiration for much of her work in mixed media comes from nature and female imagery. She explains, “Both of which to me express strength and vulnerability, power, mystery, and creative potential. This imagery is everywhere, and is often overlooked. Nearly everything I see, especially in nature, urges me to explore more and more avenues in my work.”
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Reverence for Nature in Mixed Media
Alibrandi states, “Often, if people see natural things in an unusual—and particularly an art—setting, they are more intrigued by them and study them more closely.”
Her two series, “Eye of the Storm” and “Resilience” both represent her reverence for nature and her inimitable ability to present it in a new context.
She approaches each abstract mixed media work of art with an image in mind. “I usually have a firm idea of what a piece will look like before I begin. As the work evolves, it may influence me toward a slightly different direction, but the final result is close to or exactly what I had envisioned.”
Bark, Rocks and Minerals Add Dimension
Alibrandi’s compelling, richly tactile paintings are akin to the style known as pintura matèrica, in which non artistic materials are incorporated into the paintings. She achieves a medley of intriguing and contrasting rugged, charred, abrasive, polished, complex and mysterious surfaces.
The artist explains, “I often like to isolate a certain type of rock or bark in one work and surround or partially cover it with other media that are very similar to it; this allows the viewer to unconsciously search for the natural elements within the piece.”
She has no problem acquiring her materials. “There is a great supplier of rock and mineral specimens from whom I buy a lot of my media. For works I create with wood and bark, I have a good friend who is a wood sculptor and designer in the Southern United States, and he regularly sends me what I need to make the wood pieces.”
Influenced by Music and Women’s Rights
If we observe an exuberant rhythmic gesture in Alibrandi’s artwork it is not a coincidence. She states, “I can’t talk about my art without mentioning music, which has been a profound influence in my life from the very beginning of my consciousness. Without it, I would not be alive; it is the hand in which my heart beats. For me, art and music are inextricably linked spiritual experiences.”
Her lifelong activism for women’s rights also influences her art. “While creating art gives me the freedom to express myself personally, politically, and socially, the various media I employ seem to transcend cultural and linguistic barriers.
Exhibitions, Accolades and Awards
After graduating from Massachusetts College of Art in Boston , she studied at the New England School of Art and Design.
In addition to exhibiting in several one-person exhibitions, she has shown her art at the Ateneo de Madrid in Spain, the Arc Gallery in Chicago, IL, the Galleria de’ Marchi in Bologna, Italy, and in Seoul and Gwangju, in South Korea.
She was recently selected as an exhibiting artist by Lilly Wei, recognized art critic for the leading magazine Art in America, for the Manhattan Arts International “Celebrate The Healing Power of Art” exhibition.
Her many other awards include First Prize in a juried exhibition titled “Telling Stories”. She also received an Honorable Mention in the International Art Festival in New York, NY, in 2013.
She was juried into a residency in San Menaio, Italy, in 2012, and was invited to return in 2014.
In a two part interview by Sam Pitcher on TextileArtist.org she stated, “In the future, I want to do larger, more complex pieces and would love to create large-scale installations, particularly with cloth or clothing. I’m also planning a performance piece with another artist; I’d like to do more of that.”
With Elaine Alibrandi’s sheer determination and creative prowess she will definitely be creating more powerful mixed media works of art to the delight of viewers and collectors alike.
Visit Elaine Alibrandi’s website at www.elainealibrandi.net