San Francisco based artist Lindsay Stripling usually works in watercolor to create her playful illustrations of dreamscapes dotted with simplistic human characters, animals, and objects. But for her new series, exhibiting this week at Flatcolor Gallery in Seattle, Stripling found herself painting in oils after an 8 year break from the medium. “It’s my first real adventure with oils in 8 years and it was fun for sure,” Stripling says, “trying to carry my looseness from my watercolors into these oil paintings.”
Stripling has developed a unique style of watercolor painting that knits together references to her own dreams, folk art, human habits, and the fantasy of maritime lore, as in her images of tiny people riding whales and hosting gatherings by the seaside. Her solo show “Ouroboros” features oil paintings that are soft like watercolor, feel improvisational and spontaneous, yet rich in detail.
Inspired by Alice and Martin Provensen’s children’s book illustrations and artists like Swedish painter Jockum Nordstrom, her paintings express the playfulness of their vintage designs- but with a wonderful “weirdness”. In her words, “things within things within people- layers and layers of weird”, a reference to her depiction of characters crawling out of other characters, and giant heads bobbing in “infinite pools to nowhere”.
In her artist statement for “Ouroboros”, Stripling explains that she “is trying to figure out ways to deconstruct narrative. By leading us through a landscape littered with characters that lead us through a story with no beginning, middle or end she is hoping to pull apart our classic understandings of space and the way that time moves through it.” Her work will be on view at Flatcolor Gallery from June 2nd through June 30th.