Nathan DiPietro

Body Snatchers

About the Exhibition


August 28, 2012 - September 29, 2012

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“Body Snatchers considers contemporary Western Washington as it is sculpted by a multitude of forces.

In this new series of egg tempera paintings the landscape is deconstructed, parsing out the elements which are in conflict. Blackberry thickets, swaths of concrete, landscaped hill sides, the low hanging darkness before a rain storm, all these are pieces of a symbolic retinue brought together as stage set.

The landscape is in constant flux; in a major battle with many divided antagonists, between the natural vs. manmade environment, where it is being pushed and pulled between developer and preservationist and indigenous versus invasive species. The verdant growth encroaches on manicured lawns and landscaped shrubberies, only held at bay by heavily armed work crews and the occasional goat herd.

Complementing these dramas are compositional dualities; sweeping vistas contrasted with blatant symmetry and an endless horizon of monotony composed of seductively elegant details. These complexities are enhanced by the exacting details given both to a vacant lot and an ancient stand of old growth forest, neither is given a stylistic advantage in terms of beauty or status. An attempt is made at neutrality towards all elements. Through this plethora of thematic and compositional dualities a subtle aggression plays out beneath the surface.

The tripod holds the tool of the surveyor, director, or archaeologist. Sediment layers are measured, plants classified, bones collected, fences constructed. There is a suffocating control at play within these actions. It is civilization’s response to the Northwest landscape, a story that is still in its infancy.” – Nathan DiPietro