Since childhood, Anne Austin Pearce has used her experiences as her guide to understanding herself and the world around her. A thoughtful, deliberate observer and participant of life in all its complexity and contradiction, Pearce looks to her studio practice with absolute trust in the process of drawing and painting to translate and transform her interactions into pure visual language. Often in Pearce’s paintings, she has merged abstraction and the female figure as a way to talk about the human condition. However, in her most recent series of works, Undertow, the figure has vanished completely and the marks and patterns that once barely tethered the figure to the world have turned into water. In water, Pearce has arrived at the perfect metaphor for her inquiry into “the un-nameable corridors of emotion” held in the space between daily life and the unconscious. Pearce’s unfathomable depths of water are both inside (we are made of water) and outside (water is the source of life itself). Anne Austin Pearce is a 2012 Charlotte Street Foundation Visual Artist Award Fellow and has paintings in the permanent collections of the Nerman Museum of Art, Overland Park, KS, and the University of Central Missouri, Warrensburg, in addition to numerous private collections.
From the artist
“My work usually starts with what I perceive as an unanswerable question and the quest for or construction of an answer occurs in the process of painting and drawing. It is an exorcism through mark-making.”