The drawings in the Port Mann series capture the moment in time when the construction of the new bridge across the Fraser River is underway but the old bridge still exists. The images occupy the slipstream between conceived and existing, offering the illusion of shelter and promising the transition from the confused mess of the building site to the order and clarity of the new structure. While the images denote the hardscrabble nature of this massive project, they also honor the scale of the undertaking, and the unexpected beauty of the process saturated with light unique to the Pacific Northwest.
Additionally they explore the tension between the man made and natural environment in a part of the world where wilderness is always in close proximity and the rain forest has not as yet ceded the ground to development.
This body of work consists of large-scale drawings, 36x60” and larger. I use mixed media, usually pastel and charcoal on heavy duty drafting film or vellum. I build up thin layers fixing each one with clear gesso applied with a spray. This technique adds drips and the surface is further eroded with slashes of erasure that expose the translucency of the support.
I am drawn to construction sites for what they say about what we build and why we build it, and to bridges in particular as the perfect metaphor for an amorphous but constant longing to reach the other shore.