Bethany Laranda Wood
Teaching Experience and related employment:
Archive Collections, Center for Art + Environment, Nevada Museum of Art, Reno, NA.
Scholarships and Awards:
The pioneers of the Land Arts Movement strove to create a specific type of environment that would stimulate a contemplative and interactive experience within their audience. While they employed different means to achieve this goal, one such artist believed that “Isolation is the essence of Land Art” (Walter de Maria). De Maria understood the importance of the individual interactions between a person and a work of art, allowing the viewer time and space for introspection and a clear sense of how they exist in relation to that specific Earthwork. In the same way place is experienced and becomes unique to each person, adornment and small objects generate or emphasize a unique sense of intimacy with the maker, viewer and wearer.
As artists, we create our own detritus through the process of making, and these castoffs also come with a unique potential for reuse. One way this actively manifests within my work is through an exploration of the unique nature of mark-making within sketches that document observations about objects and events. Hastily gestural lines of sketches provide selective and sometimes abstracted information by describing notable or emphasized qualities of the subject. They are also used as an informal and generally unseen part of a planning or documenting process, forgotten or discarded after the completion of a piece itself. I am interested in how these selectively descriptive styles of mark-making can be translated or interpreted from one form or medium to another, as from drawing to metal, metal to print. In this translation, these marks relay specific information that not only describe, but also transform into a material that embraces the abstraction of line and may be used alone or alongside natural and found objects within each piece.
Bethany Wood was born and raised in West Texas. She earned her BFA in Jewelry design and Metalsmithing from Texas Tech University and her MFA from the University of Iowa. She is now a working artist in Iowa City, IA.
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