Bryant Street Gallery is pleased to present At the Edge, an exhibition of recent works by visual artist Thea Schrack.
The work featured in this show is distinct in the way that it captures the span of Schrack’s styles and abilities, as well as the unprecedented circumstances in which the artwork was created. From imposing large-scale canvases, to subtle encaustic pieces and enigmatic photographs, Thea’s most recent body of work steps away from the familiar realm of discernibility and moves confidently into newer, bolder, more abstract territory. The sea is no longer a subject, but rather an initial point of inspiration for experimentation, meditation, and transcendence.
About her process, Thea states:
Prior to last year, I relied more on travel to different places for inspiration and variety. Looking back, I now realize limits have a value within the creative process. My boundaries were suddenly contained within San Francisco. Photographing at Ocean Beach week after week provided a refuge during lockdown. This repetition forced me to look deeper into a subject I felt so familiar with. At the Edge is an amalgamation of this time and place, both in painting and photography. Together they represent me as a whole artist. The flow between both mediums bridge and influence each other as I work back and forth. Form started overriding subject matter. This voyage to abstraction is right where I want to be, to grow a vision centered on a duality of motion and chance, with an outcome allowing the work to go beyond the purely representational.
Though Thea’s creative career began in photography, encaustic and painting have become equally important aspects of her practice over the years. Schrack describes how each medium impacts her response to subject matter. “Painting is a very different act than photography. You’re pouring yourself into a finite area (canvas) with paint and color, whereas with photography, it feels like the polar opposite, pulling something out of a subject.” Through these different mediums, each with their own nuances and unique characteristics, Thea explores the myriad intricacies of the ocean, water itself, and human interaction with nature.