Anne Martin McCool
Anne Martin McCool traces her painting roots to the landscape, a theme prevalent throughout most of her work. Her constant inspiration has been the Northwest, with its abundant water, its gray skies, its tall reeds portray the landscape through her use of recognizable symbols and themes. The earth, the seasons and our relationship to them, all play an important role in her subject matter. Her expressive works have both mystery and spontaneity, and are often compelling narratives that invite the viewer to become part of the visual process.
“My work is often a direct reaction to the landscape I live in or my travels to new places. Sometimes I use symbols of the land but in a simplified way exploring shape and color more than a specific explanatory picture. I am looking for emotion and the spirit of paint more than exactitude. My work has always had a core of origin in color. Color often comes first for me before the composition is beginning to form. My process is highly intuitive. The more abstract pieces often have a basis in landscape but I am looking more deeply into the subconscious expressive images that want to come. I have spent many years developing skills with various media – experimenting often and trying to follow my feelings to a deeper level. After I learn how materials work I feel that one of the main things I have to do is get out of the way and let the nature of the work come without a lot of thinking. The paintings seem to talk to me once the first colors are put down and they tell me what is needed if I listen well. I rarely plan images although I do tend to work in series with one piece leading to the next. I love the physical part of painting – the textures and markings in surfaces. I have been fortunate to travel and gather more impressions to work with, from things such as ancient walls in France or pine-fired pottery in Japan.”