To view the FOGO ISLAND PAINTINGS, please click "Portfolio", then click on the first thumbnail (me in the tweed hat) to your left to view my work done in Tilting, Fogo Island Newfoundland between May 2013 and April 2014.
I have painted the Landscape for many years. I work with oils, ashes from wood stoves, powdered asphaltum, powdered pigments, wax, and other materials, on stretched canvas. These materials are built up in a long process of application, which eventually leads to a thick hard heavily textured surface. It is my fascination with the vast empty landscape, an attraction toward corrosion, decay, disintegration, deterioration, and the geological wearing down of the earths surface through time. All share in the patient observance of the subtle changes in the landscape, through the unforgiving acts of nature that reshape and re-define the beauty of the land.
In the last few years I have begun to paint the Ocean. These paintings are made only from oil paint and wax. I have painted waterways, but never the literal ocean. I am now fascinated and absorbed by the oceans repetitive life, its changes at once subtle and drastic; its powerful and literal fullness, its linear existence, its loneliness and its own fecund nature with a life underneath the surface, remaining mostly hidden.
So much of art assumes a myth of the Lost Eden. Rather MLiz Keefes work recognizes that we are all travelers in tough times. While she offers the sensuous pleasure of picture making, she does not deny the dignity of pain.
Malin Wilson, Albuquerque Journal, January 1993
Keefes labored paintings are made in long vast series. She makes the same painting over and over again for, it seems, years. The result of making work in this manner is actually in the process. That is like prayer or physical exercise; power-accumulation of energy- is created by the momentum of an almost compulsive ritual, repetitive activity. (But what is painting in part, but a compulsive activity?)