Christine Kirkegard Portrait

Christine Kirkegard PhD

Artist Philosophy

A feeling for the spirit of a particular place develops in quiet reflection while drawing in situ, most often in natural wilderness. While the drawing is important as a record of observation, the essence of the experience is held in memory where only the overwhelming sensations remain and it is this which gives rise to the painting.

My painting suggests both a sense of my direct experience of the landscape and the imaginative transformation of that experience through reflection and memory. Painting the landscape is primarily an intuitive response, an inscape where the image drawn from memory is recreated and intensified through the painting process.

The landscape serves as a metaphor for my understanding of relationship both to the natural world and to an art tradition and its continuance. As such, my concerns rest as much in painting for painting's sake and the challenge of producing good paintings which work on an aesthetic level first but which also suggest the spirit of particular environments. Beyond this, I also have a deep feeling for the unified forms of nature or the universal in the particular landscape.

The light of the sun, the limitless continuum of space, and the continual flux of nature are examples of enduring and changing entities universal to all landscapes, which suggest the whole and embrace the diversity of the natural world. The unified forms of nature, for example light, are also key elements in a unified conception of the landscape as art. Paintings explore my concerns through series, or themes and variations.