Artist Feature: Amelia Schroeder

Vacant II, oil on canvas, 24x36", 2015

Yonder, mixed media, 30x40", 2011

Flow, acrylic on canvas, 36x48", 2011

Artist Statement: I want to give up art altogether but I can’t seem to; it’s like some chronic disease that has afflicted me since the age of three. Inspiration comes from nature mostly, also raw emotion, because as much as I try to be a hard ass, I have to make things because my heart is constantly breaking. It feels as though the sorrow of Mother Earth is on my shoulders. My work is a dance between wanting to make beautiful things (because there's enough ugliness in the world) and wanting to purge myself of life experiences and the pain of the destruction around me non verbally.

To this end, my paintings started out in undergrad as a statement against what humans are doing to the planet. “Look at these pretty colors and cells and feel bad about what you’re doing and change things.” But I’m not sure that there’s a better advocate for the beauty of nature than nature herself. The absurdity of using lumber-farm pine, GMO cotton canvas and oil paints to convey all this wasn’t lost on me. I felt like a fraud. It’s crazy that I might commune with some paint on a flat surface, constantly producing more non-utilitarian bourgeois objects, and hope to change the world that way. So now I mostly salvage canvases and reuse scrap wood panels and have given up on fancy artist statements that tell people what to feel about what I do. If you pause long enough to have an experience with my work, I just hope that it’s truly your own, or that it brings deep and full appreciation of the moment because that’s what I gain from creating it. If it happens to unveil some beauty for you, that's great, too.