This paper describes the development of the artwork I created for my Thesis exhibition for an MFA in Fine Arts Studio at Rochester Institute of Technology. My initial inspiration to create came from the landscape. After finding a local scene that showed the growth of life in nature, I would paint the scene outside, or inside using a photo reference. In the winter of 2010, I used warm brown under paintings to contrast the subsequent layers of paint needed to depict the cold climate. As I painted, I worked to convey a unique interpretation of nature. The palette knife allowed me to show rough scratch marks on my canvases, while my mediums let me paint large, thick brushstrokes on my surfaces. The relationship between the weathered scratch marks and the fresh paint created contrast on my surfaces. Documenting my pieces as they progressed became important because it let me see the processes I used. I explored and experimented with different media, searching for the best way to express my ideas about nature. In addition to painting, printmaking and video became important methods of expression for me. My documentation evolved into video pieces that took my paintings apart in order to give viewers information about what went into the painting. Over time, my artwork became more abstract. My new research inspired me to express nature using bolder gestures than before. I thought the break down of imagery was more truthful to nature than suggesting recognizable imagery. Because I witnessed several changes in nature that reinforced this idea, my pieces became less realistic. One of my paintings became the subject of a documentary video. Almost every time I painted on this surface, I recorded what I did with a video camera. The painting and video were based on my feelings about my projects, my research and my reactions to the seasons. The finished video was projected next to the painting at my Thesis show. These two pieces were accompanied by my latest paintings and prints. During the reception, a performance titled Transient Being was previewed. This was a collaboration between myself, performer Alaina Olivieri and choreographer Eran Hanlon. Eran was the artistic director for Alaina, who danced in front of my projected video with moves that related to the theme.
Library of Congress Subject Headings
Landscape painting--Technique; Video art; Nature in art; Palette knife painting
Department, Program, or Center
School of Art (CIAS)
Tarantelli, Joseph, "Deconstruction in nature" (2013). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
RIT – Main Campus