Erin Zona | Artist Statement
Cosmic Thing / Strange Archaeology / U ≤ Ø
One thing that is very important. I am terrified of the dark. In the dark of my bedroom, a towel draped over a door easily becomes an enormous - possibly threatening - face. Vivid imagination coupled with irrational fear has had substantial impact on my work. A few years ago, I found an image of a cave painting in which the painter added pigment to the natural geography of the cave wall to create an abstract face. I imagine the artist inside the cave 10,000 years ago, seeing the illusion of a face on the surface wall and helping it along with a bit of pigment. I see myself exactly this way. We can only speculate why that artist chose to make those marks. They may have been made in worship, out of fear, or perhaps boredom. These are not dissimilar to my artistic motivations. Daily routine is vital to production in my studio. My drawing technique is time consuming, but not a burden. I get pleasure from repetitive acts and enjoy experiencing the passage of time. I produce these methodical drawings side by side with one-of-a-kind and editioned print multiples. It has always been critical to me that these multiples somehow undermine the traditional “art market” of which my drawings are perfectly suited and always be free at my exhibitions and open studio events. We're all aware that publishing trends are leaning towards the digital, as a collector of printed matter and an artist; my first judgment of this shift was despair. Now, I predict that in the future there is a larger and even more democratic place for the artist multiple.
My most recent drawing series, Cosmic Thing, is an attempt to describe the abstract relationship between the visible and the spiritual, the material and the supernatural. The night sky, specifically the asterism known as Orion’s Belt, has always existed to me as a powerful emblem of the divine. The wonderful order of those three stars could be incidental, but this could be strategic design and consequently made to seem like chance. A trick. I am absolutely not trying to say that my conscious and studied brushstrokes or geometric shapes are an attempt to recreate the power of god or to even be about concrete religion at all, but my work is about things not being precisely what they seem. These drawings are symbolic of my desire to discover - or more likely, to fantasize about what invisible truths our world might embody.