Monday, August 23, 2010

Last week to catch MERGE Alumni Exhibition! Read about artist Claudia Roulier

Claudia Roulier is a collector. “I collect things,” she says. “Old things, found things, used things, odd things, creepy things, and unloved things. I collect pictures and ideas some which appeal to my darker cynical side, and use all of these collections in my work.” Roulier has shown her work through Denver, and recently had a show in New Mexico. She makes it a point to be in at least one show per month, though usually more, and they are typically juried, though sometimes she is invited. She was most recently in the Cherry Creek Art Festival. Metro State caught up with Roulier recently to ask her a few questions about her MERGE 2010 Alumni Exhibition submission and various other things.

Created with flickr slideshow from softsea.

Metro State: How would you characterize your art?
Claudia Roulier: My art runs the gambit from whimsical to whimsy with an edge which tip toes into the realm of shadows and nightmares. My assemblages are definitely more sinister than the paintings. I love using found objects and vintage photos. The sizes vary from tiny tins all the way up to full sized beasts. With my paintings I specialize in using many collage layers, incorporating vintage paper, photos and sometimes objects. Because I use many different mediums, pencil, acrylic paint, oil pastels, vintage paper and photo transfers I finish them with a resin coating. If I would have taken a different course in school I probably would be called an illustrator today.

MS: Tell me about your latest work and why you are inspired by it.
CR: I am, first most and always inspired by images and juxtopostioning of images and ideas in both the assemblage work and my paintings. I have always been image oriented and that's how I work. I like putting odd things together in such a way that they look almost married. I look through old photos that I collect and image searches on the net to get the bones of what I want to do.

MS: In what ways did your Metro State professors influence your work?
CR: I was an older student and very involved with creating at the time, I wanted to be there and took it seriously. I soaked up everything that I could. I was heavily influenced by Barbara Houghton, my photo teacher who pushed us to explore images and the creating of them in many alternative ways. I still have that love of images and experimentation. Craig Marshall Smith instilled craftsmanship and a love for tiny details, which remind me of dessert, it just finishes off the meal to perfection. I was scared to death to come to a critique unprepared and with an uninspiring project that carries over to now. Rodger Lang was my ceramic teacher. I absolutely adored him and worked very hard in the area of ceramic sculpture and that carries over in my work today, although I don't always work in clay. But I'll always remember form and function.

MS: How has your work evolved since you graduated?
CR: I think I was a pretty good student and I am just now getting back to the level I was at in school. I never painted in school, so that was intimidating and to this day I consider myself a drawer not a painter I simply use paint as a tool, but a tool I can't live without! I have always been drawn to the things that populate side shows, horror movies and nightmares. Some of that is tamed by some of the more whimsical stuff I do, but it's there, still.

MS: Tell me why you submitted the pieces that you did for MERGE.
CR: I actually submitted my three latest works by design I wanted my freshest most recent work. Only one got in but that's okay with me!

MS: How do you feel about this opportunity to present your work for Metro State's new CVA facility?
CR: I love this new facility and it's right across the street from a co-op, Core New Art Space, that I belong to. It's just great to have something like this on the strip. It's a great place to show and it has a lot of credibility, the remodel is absolutely stunning.

To see Roulier’s work, visit her Web site.

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