ARTIST STATEMENT

 

Stacie Hernandez (Mexican-American), b. Wichita, Kansas.  I obtained my Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Drawing and Painting from the University of Oklahoma.  There I studied with painter George Bogart and sculptor Timothy Segar.  I then moved to Brooklyn, NY to continue my studies at Pratt Art Institute under Ross Neher, receiving my Master of Fine Arts degree.  While at Pratt I had the privilege of meeting Master Painter George McNeil whom made a profound effect on my life as a painter. 


In 1991, I founded the Art School for the Visual Arts, located in Bergen County NJ, providing fine art instruction to students from the surrounding counties.  After moving to Florida, I established Palencia Fine Arts Academy & Gallery in St. Augustine, FL and was the director/owner/artist in residence until 2017.  I currently reside in Dallas,  Texas where I am entirely focused on working in oils. I have joined a community of artists in the historic landmark building called, The Continental Gin Building.  It encompasses many diverse forms of art, with a blend of local and internationally known artists and designers. 


I knew early in my youth that painting and drawing is what I wanted to do and my primary medium would be oil. Heavily influenced by both the Modern Art movements’ abstract expressionism and a rich vibrant Mexican-American cultural childhood experience, I have been inspired to experiment with new ways of processing ideas and concepts regarding the nature of materials and functions of art. 


My  abstract thought was encouraged by artist, mentor and friend George  McNeil (1908-1995) with whom discussions about the current art movement  was shared over tea on many occasions.  McNeil and I exchanged thoughts and techniques in his Brooklyn studio and home, one block away from my brownstone.  He encouraged me to experiment with one of the key signatures of modernism which was to have an emotionally wrought brushstroke.  Besides McNeil I have also been influenced by Anselm Keifer, Eric Fischl, David Salle, Mary Boone, Julian Schnabel, Lee Krasner, Helen Frankenthaler, Georgia O’Keeffe, Picasso, Red Grooms, Jackson Pollock, De Kooning, Roberta Smith and Turner, to name a few! 


Over the past year, I have become more aware of my Synesthesia and have decided to embrace this natural expression in my painting.  Synesthesia is the neurological phenomenon in which stimulation of one sensory or cognitive pathway leads to automatic, involuntary experiences in a second sensory or cognitive pathway. These are usually the first abstract concepts that educational systems require children to learn. And which result in my “hearing” colors. 

I strive for efficiency in brushstroke observing form, space, movement and color.  Informed by a range of emotional states, points of time, and position in my surrounding landscape, the work is an affirmation that people experience music, landscapes, emotions and memories in a complex interconnected way.  I strive to make this evident in the tension and balance between paint and surface, and between one or more colors while hearing colors speak.    

The work synthesizes a multitude of contrasting concepts and forms: light and dark, warm and cool, space and density, gravity and lightness, while each color struggles to gain its own recognition on canvas. I deployed color, line, shape, and texture to create a rhythmic visual experience that evokes an emotional response. 

Each line is painstakingly etched into the background, a direct physical language.  Colors are inextricably tied to one another.  So clear is this relationship that I have associated each color with an exact sound, per painting, allowing the viewer the ability to get in touch with their spiritual selves.  


My oeuvre can be broken down into a multitude of periods; shifts in my work typically coincide with material changes in my surrounding landscape, personal relationships, or some major life event. 

I prefer to work in solitude and my paintings are built slowly and carefully; the arc of my arm can be seen in the brush or palette knife stroke.  I have a great deal of experience with discipline, practice, balance, and a relaxed and fluid control as both painter and as an athlete.  These principles of physical action, combined with careful, precise visual observation of my environment, underscore my lifelong approach to painting. 


I’m constantly reminded of the relevance of this approach  by a quote from Roberta Smith; “Paintings like poetry and music, are  essential nutrients that help people sustain healthy lives.  They’re not  recreational pleasures or sidelines.  They are tools that help us grasp the diversity of the world and its history, and explore the emotional capacities with which we navigate the world.  They illuminate, they humble, they nurture, they inspire.  They teach is to use our eyes and to know ourselves by knowing others.”