Illusion and Immersion: Drawings by Rebeca Claderon Pittman
Fine Arts Center- Northern Kentucky University
Aug. 19th- Sept. 20th, 2013
Artist reception: Sept. 5th, 2012
Windows on the Infinite
Rebeca Calderon Pittman’s Recombinant Drawings
By Karen S. Chambers
Calderon Pittman’s drawings are charming, whimsical, and witty. They are dreamlike in the way bits and pieces of reality exist in that state, and, like a dream, do not tell a coherent story. Because of her technique of layering a drawing on acetate with one on vellum, her images float in space.
Several words come to mind thinking about Calderon Pittman’s layering of drawings: complementary and synergistic. By combining drawings and manipulating them, sometimes erasing areas, they are complementary on a formal level. I think Calderón Pittman’s inclusion of line drawings of her paintings in her studio scenes reinforces that. The layers are synergistic because there is an interaction between them. But there is also the relationship between the viewer and the drawing. The drawings require the viewer’s active participation to comprehend them.
Because of their size, the drawings need close inspection, and the viewer is rewarded with the delightful play between the two separate drawings. This is heightened in the framed works I saw with the acetate and vellum layers sandwiching a sheet of glass. When lit the lines of the top layer, which is acetate, can cast a shadow on the vellum, so now there are three layers to delight the eye and challenge the brain.
Calderón Pittman’s drawings are absolutely the right scale. They are intimate in both size and subject matter. The interiors are homely, and the exterior scenes all seem to be more cultivated gardens than wild landscape.
The sureness and economy of Pittman’s continuous line in her ink contour drawings recalls Picasso’s 1914-1915 realistic portrait drawings.
Although there is no color, Pittman’s scenes remind me of Bonnard and Vuillard in their unpretentious domesticity.