PAINTINGS SMALL WORKS WORKS ON PAPER INSTALLATIONS THE NOCTURNES PROCESS BIOGRAPHY PRESS CONTACT
P R O C E S S
My works are created by applying natural beeswax, resin and pigment to wooden panels, using a blowtorch to blend the brush strokes. The process is deliberate with images evolving through slow accumulations of semi-transparent layers of colour. Light can permeate these layers and becomes compositionally present. The heat invisibly dilutes, mixes, and binds each layer into a translucent luminous tone. My application and removal of material, in an additive/reductive process, allows unexpected moments to emerge in an alchemical dance between what is directed and what is uncontrolled to achieve a sublime quality of diffused light, while remaining minimal and abstract. An element of time remains evident.
My visual language is inspired by how light, perceived through pigment, creates space in combination with how perceptions of time can be retained through colour bringing to question the fine line between figuration and abstraction. The painterly addition of photography augments this pursuit.
I am interested in finding a balance of exactly how much is necessary to fully develop a painting and exactly how much is necessary to leave out. Working to remain open and sustain a painting, for me, becomes a search for presence. In my work, the concept of how to expand space through colour has been a continued theme. Often my subject is light, revealed through a dialogue of changing transitions in colour where small moments reveal the larger picture. Originally drawn to Encaustic by its historical relevance, I now find meaning in the material as an environmentalist; beeswax innately bringing to discussion the state of our fragile environment. With its difficulty to control, there is always a sense of mystery in the work. Being biologically pure, no other material encompasses nature as simply.
– Janise Yntema, 2018
Q U O T E S
“In a minimalist manner, Yntema captures the recollection of light where hue is the reminder that opens an unseeable distance. She creates a physical container for the uncontainable.” – Joanne Mattera, NYC, Author, Curator, Artist
"Her paintings capture and emanate light toward a transcendent feeling of tranquillity, order, and purity. Yntema's colours create silence and simplicity; an atmosphere of transcendent lightness remains.” –Jacquelyn Stonberg Professor of Art History, Kean University, NJ
"With her affinity for the land and attraction towards the spiritual, Yntema's paintings embrace the primal and unseen found both in the world that surrounds and within. Sharing within the romantic tradition, her works rest firmly within the realm of the sublime." –Mark Ferguson, Writer
H I S T O R Y
Beeswax encaustic painting dates back over 2000 years. The ancient Greeks adorned their battle ships, statues and buildings with this combination of damar resin, beeswax and pigment. The Fayum tomb portraits, from the Roman Egyptian period, testify to the archival durability of this material. Beeswax, resin and pigment were the materials used to create the murals of Pompeii. This technique remained popular throughout the 6th and 7th centuries, but was replaced by tempera and fresco due to the intensity of time, labour and heat involved. Beeswax painting was virtually lost by the middle ages.
The term encaustic literally means to burn in. Any true beeswax and resin painting involves heat and the process to fuse the layers. Heat acts as the invisible solvent much as turpentine acts as an evaporating solvent for oil painting. The natural dammar resin gives the wax strength and durability. Beeswax and resin are organically pure and biological materials. From the labour of the honey bees to the natural Malaysian dammar resin, no chemicals are involved in this technique. The quality of the material is very much alive, like an organic skin, and can hold colour in a pure, luminous tone.
As a painting material, beeswax and resin reveals a subtlety rarely found in artificially manufactured materials. The delicate beauty of nature is inherent in my works. My continued use of beeswax draws focus to the ancient history of this medium.
All content © 2018 Janise Yntema