Piece description from the artist
acrylic on stretched canvas with texture gel media (acrylic based or acrylic emulsion mixed)
I have done a number of abstract paintings where there is a large base pattern in the background and a finely detailed foreground pattern. As in many of my similar abstract paintings, the foreground details in “Heretical Musings…” relate to the background, but are not contained nor defined by the initial pattern behind them. They act more like comments; contrapuntal statements that connect and articulate the larger shapes behind them.
I often think of these abstract paintings as a kind of artistic envisioning of a heuristic. The background is the initial set of conditions and the finely detailed foreground is the complex evolving state.
My process in creating these pieces is also not completely deterministic. The background is created geometrically. In this case tape masking was used to create hard edged layers of defined geometry. The foreground is built on the background, but also articulates and works with the little “mistakes” vagaries and randomness introduced by the imperfect masking and painting process. The foreground is completed in fine detail and freehand style. The change in approach and style from foreground and background emphasizes the contrast between the “set” deterministic geometry in the background layers and the looser more responsive and unpredictable freehand figures in the final foreground layers.
The visual idea of tiny and sharply articulated things in front with more weakly colored graded larger geometries in the back is a familiar aesthetic for me. Many painters derive their visual intuition from years of looking out at nature and the landscape, etc. Those scenes have certain visual cues that denote depth and dimension.
I have spent a large number of hours looking at the world through various scopes and focusing optics (light and electron microscopes mostly). In these types of optics, the focal plane and the out-of-plane defocused images create a completely different type of aesthetic. The visual cues and logic of microscopy have become second nature and form the visual intuition that orders many of my abstract works.
Dr. Regina Valluzzi has an extensive scientific background in nanotechnology and biophysics. She has been a scientist in the chemical industry, a green chemistry researcher, a research professor at the engineering school at Tufts, a start-up founder engaged in technology commercialization, and a start-up and commercialization consultant.
Even during periods of intense activity as a scientist, Dr. Valluzzi has always held a strong interest in the visual arts and in visual information. While she majored in Materials Science at MIT, she also obtained a second degree in music and a minor in visual studies. Visual arts have managed to permeate her technical work; during her Ph.D in Polymer Science and Engineering at UMass Amherst, she completed a thesis that required advanced electron microscopy, image analysis, and theoretical data modeling. These experiences provided the visual insight and information that now influences much of her artwork.
Dr. Valluzzi’s work has been included in private collections across the US, UK, Germany, Canada, Japan, Netherlands, Switzerland, Bulgaria, Dubai and Malta, and in the corporate collection of "Seyfarth Shaw" Boston law offices around Boston. She has a selection of pieces on loan to the MIT Materials Science and Engineering Department as indoor public art. Her accomplishments include having published thirty articles in peer-reviewed scientific journals, having made several scientific patents, having been a subject matter expert for an encyclopedia chapter, and having been invited to speak at science talks across the US, Europe, and Japan.
Her newsletter is a good source of ongoing information: http://eepurl.com/daiLQ