Aaron Wallace is a contemporary artist living in Willow Spring, NC.
My work is not derivative of a representational subject; instead it is an inventive, out-of-the-ordinary pictorial space and/or art object. My work often echoes my physical movements during the process of creating the work. I am existentially “in the moment” and each piece becomes about the experience of the creative moment, an exploration of me and an examination of materials and the process itself. At the moment that I am creating a work of art, I feel I am the most honest with myself, exploring the recesses of my own mind. I am inspired to make art when I am dealing with a strong emotion about a social injustice or a relationship. Sometimes I let music help guide me through a piece.
After ending my nine years in the Army, I began to find it difficult to justify what our government was doing not only internationally, but here at home. My frustration continues to grow with our country’s increased dependence on unjust wars, increased police militarization, the racist drug war and the effects on society. Although it may not always be evident by the viewer, an internal struggle with these issues is expressed within my work, which is often socially and politically motivated.
Found and repurposed materials have become a very important element in my work . I have worked with honey barrels, bubble wrap, spray foam and most recently discarded old doors hung sideways from the wall to create a linear panoramic pictorial space. I use aerosol paints in conjunction with found object stencils to create patterns and use spray foam and mediums to create organic-looking shapes and textures and juxtapose them with hard lines and vivid colors.
My art signifies my struggle with society and is an expression of my response to it. I am struggling with my military history and experiences versus my current political views; my love of nature and the earth versus my addiction to social media and the spoils of the Industrial Revolution; and struggles within my relationships. My most successful works of art have been created in moments of deep self reflection, completely alone with my thoughts and available materials to create. The longer I am alone, the more successful I feel the works become. Each piece is a record of how I felt about something whether it was a social view, a political statement, or how I felt about a relationship. My process is about exploring what material can do, applying it in new ways, moving outside of the idea of what a painting is while combining sculptural and printmaking techniques to canvas or rigid substrates, such as repurposed doors, to hold heavier materials.
More recently, my work is about feeling and movement. I use a lot of bright colors to bring humor and joy to the asthetic of the piece.
Little planning is done with each piece, rather the work expresses feelings about a specific event in my life or a political stance and I embed that feeling in each piece through movents projected onto each piece by slinging paint, water or other materials onto a surface. I find that using local repurposed doors allows me to work on a larger scale and produce a more durable visual object while leaving less of an impact on the environment than using a canvas produced in another country.