There is a magical deep blackness in the ocean that mirrors some of the more phantasmagorical moments in life. Ambient floating, beautiful distractions, personal despair, endlessness, spatial illusions, heightened senses and the feeling of being intensely connected to the great unknown.
I started making these landscapes during artist residencies at the Sou’Wester Lodge and Vintage Trailer Park in Seaview Washington. While there, I walk along the ocean and hike the cliffs of the peninsula to look, and be, and stare, and look before I come back to work. This ongoing series is an exploration of the dramatic mood and wondrous sensations I notice in the nocturnal landscapes of the Pacific Northwest.
Collaborations with Kathy MacCrateBrought together by punk shows, dance performances and artistic vision, Heather McLaughlin and Kathy MacCrate are now collaborating to create immersive art environments and work on paper together.
They are excited to see where this journey takes them.
Collaboration III is a new immersive site specific sculptural environment exploring themes of anatomy, nature, outer space, magic, and the world beyond. The installation is constructed as an open air sculpture that the viewer can travel through. The environment is intended to be experienced anytime, day or night, rain or shine. Collaboration III is a part of the 2021 Sou’Wester Arts Week, To Reconvene. Accompanying the immersive installation Kathy and Heather created a limited edition publication titled: To Summon Again.
Collaboration II reflects on the complexities and nuances of sexual, gender, and anatomic identity. To some, it represents pain, choice, birth, stimulation, disconnect, ancestry, suffering, mystery, science, life. For these artists, it represents a subject matter that inspired a new collaboration. Building on their first interactive installation this team re-envisioned the Collaboration I form into a new experience for Sou’Wester Arts Week 2020. Heather and Kathy created a small series of take-away fliers that read “If my vagina was Mars it would be less of a mystery” and provided sequin “stars” and glue so viewers could add to the experience inside the form.
Understanding the complexities and nuances of sexual, gender, and anatomic identity, Heather and Kathy decided to explore the time-age tradition of vaginal representation in art. To some it represents pain, choice, birth, stimulation, disconnect, ancestry, suffering, mystery, science, life. For these two artists, it represents a subject matter that inspired a new collaboration. This installation was exhibited in 2019 at the Ideological Outsider Art Show, Dundee Lodge Campout Volume II in Gaston OR
I love to draw the world around me, not only to hone my craft, but also to investigate, record and experience the particular place. When I am not working from direct observation, my imagery often deals with strong personalities in a “slice of life” environment with a touch of fantasy. As if Norman Rockwell, Raymond Pettibon and Lisa Frank all collided together. I am obsessed with the ocean and mermaids. I love critical discussion around the role of our fantasies/daydreams and how they affect our everyday emotions, and life goals. I often mix the pretty stuff with the frustrating ugly parts of life because that’s how life really is.
Printmaking is not just a part of my practice. It has also become a home for me since moving to Portland in 2001. I am ever grateful to all my teachers and the amazing printmaking community that I have had the pleasure of meeting over the years. Nothing beats the beauty of fresh ink on a hand pulled print, or the joy of printmakers at a portfolio exchange potluck.