“Art is an escape in a way, but it’s also the outcome of many of my most personal, complicated, and contemplative thoughts, especially recently. That’s not to say that these thoughts are to be translated to the viewer, but it’s inescapable that many times the tone of one’s art reflects the tone of their thoughts. I do feel that drawing is meditative in the sense that it’s part of my routine and I need it to stay sane.”- Says Perry
Pat Perry is an inspired artist from Michigan who demonstrates creativity through a range of media. Working itinerantly, Perry gets to explore various environments which help him to develop his art. He makes careful and cautious observations to grasp an understanding of what he can see, and how he could turn it into something different. Perry provides insightful illustrations addressing several themes as well as documenting his travels through drawing and photography. I immediately felt that Perry’s inspiration stemmed from the surrounding environment he is currently in. The kind of landscape and people are what makes his portraits.
Currently living in Detroit, this definitely has an effect on his work. In the lands of the north, he is surrounded by colourful people, music and the ordinary streets of the Midwest. It is ideal for Perry to take in his surroundings, doing his best to listen and learn everyday from the world he lives in enables his ability to talk to his audience through his artwork. I have taken a keen interest in particular to Perry’s paintings and biro drawings where people and landscapes combine.
His intrepid character makes him determined to avoid the mundane and search for exciting sources of inspiration. We see a collision of the natural and urban world, beautifully presented and fuelled with consciousness. Rather than romanticising the ordinary, he chooses to record moments from his life, making the work personal and meaningful. There is an all-embracing mix of mediums with fine detail that lead to the complexity of his work. Perry describes himself as ‘virtually boundary-less as he believes he will branch out and explore new depths constantly changing mediums and subject matter. I find it exciting to see an artist so enthused by his surroundings; it inspires me to focus more closely on my environment as I already have a fascination for documenting moments and memories in my life.
What Perry draws is a real environment, and a real people, but the way it is depicted is quite surreal. It is suggestive of an imaginative world, perhaps a person’s dreams. In some portraits, there are two environments presented in one piece, this implies that the environment one person may physically be in, is not the same environment the person is mentally in.
Here is one of my favourite pieces by Perry
This is a biro piece where the artist has created a similar effect to double exposure. Silhouettes of a person with rich, textural landscape create a piece that seems representative of dreams. The figure of a person can be seen but no facial features are shown, however you can see the clothing of the women. Her face has now become an environment. Highly detailed work using critical skill composes a beautiful piece of work which coheres to the theme of environment.