Erica Weiss: Artist Profile
Photo taken by Laura Vanags
Erica is a painter who was born in Victoria, British Columbia. In September 2014, she started a new position as an Art Teacher at a high school in North Vancouver. The year before, she worked at a boarding school on Vancouver Island. Previous to this, she was an Art and Acting Teacher at a Canadian international school in Wuhan, China. As a child growing up in Victoria, she loved making art and has continued this joy to the present day. Encouraged by teachers both in grade school and private lessons, she continued her art education in university. She completed an Honours degree in Art History in 2005, and completed her Bachelor of Education in 2010. She recently completed her Master of Education degree at the University of Victoria.
Erica has lived in Canada, England, Japan and China, and many of her paintings reflect her time living abroad and travelling. At first glance, her work appears to be scenes of vibrant and cheerful natural imagery. However, on a deeper level, there is a complexity that embraces the past and yet provides a contemporary personal approach. Her work is inspired by the ukiyo-e and Rinpa painting style from Japan in the 17th and 18th Century, which portray simple subjects in a minimalistic manner and expresses harmony in nature. Each plant and living creature is deliberately placed to create a sense of balance and evoke a feeling of harmony and chi. Although her work concentrates on natural themes illustrating the beauty of nature and incorporates simplicity and balance, it also investigates the opposing forces of nature and the transience of life which is a common theme in the vanitas still life from the Dutch Golden Age in the 16th and 17th Century.
The beauty of the representational natural forms in her work is juxtaposed with textural, layered backgrounds to play on the energy in nature. This energy is often enhanced with her use of colour by allowing some colours to recede and others to act as an accent to further express the push and pull in nature. Her process involves layering tissue paper and building layers of paint to create a background that is alive and tactile. She uses stencils, sponges, textural brayers, drywall applicators and fluctuating brushstrokes. Building layers of texture with various techniques and processes as well as recurrently exploring ways to express the balance and the opposition in nature builds a sense of depth and continues to take her work in new unimagined, directions.
Erica is a painter who loves the process of painting and sharing her paintings with others. Her work is for sale, and she will also create paintings on commission. You can contact her about commissions and buying artwork for sale at: firstname.lastname@example.org.