Marylyn English


I am a Los Angeles artist working with acrylic paints or natural materials on canvas. In an early memory of my Grandmother, I remember watching her create a realistic oil landscape. When I told her that I hoped to be able to paint like her someday, I was surprised when she cautioned me to not use her style. She explained that she literally depicted the scene before her and she hoped I would take my art to another level. Since that day, while trying to understand the full weight of her words, I have recorded an unfolding narrative of my artistic discoveries.

Employing three separate metaphors, my recent work concerns the relationship of our fragile earth to our own cycles of life and mortality:

The “Wetlands” series is an exploration of water in its various forms. I often use multiple perspectives to create an image within a reinvented space permeated by the erasure of a human presence. These landscapes are residues of experiences rather than actual locations.

The series “Terra” includes abstracted depictions of three-dimensional geological strata using earth’s elements such as minerals, powdered metals and rock, as well as plant matter, combined with acrylic mediums. These striated images suggest subsurface upheavals and the erosion of the earth’s surface just as experiences can etch creases upon a human profile.

In my most recent series, “River View”, the divisions within the canvases flow together with a sequence of cause and effect. They include observations of urban sprawl consuming the last vestiges of what once were rushing mountain streams. Graffiti echoes the primal desire of leaving evidence of our brief existence on earth. I challenge myself to express concern by depicting the beauty of the earth with gestures of its degradation.

Our Present is the sum of our entire Past. Our Future depends upon how we handle that challenging legacy. I hope to soon transition to paintings that reflect a revived appreciation of how we can improve our current state. At that time, my Grandmother’s view can be restored. Although we cannot hold back the tides, we can learn to re-channel their energy to benefit our future.

Marylyn English


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