leanne shapton's painted patterns

Last month, the New York Times Interactive Op-Ed site featured this major eye-candy work, A Month Of Wednesday Patterns, by Leanne Shapton. These freehand watercolor renditions of out-in-the-world patterns have so much character and energy. This erratic little collection of swatches makes my thoughts go erratic, too, thinking about all sorts of human-nature things. I see these works as the charming documents of the simple poetry of the process; her being out in the world, noticing these patterns in their context, and recording them free-handed in an imperfect yet absolutely clear visual language. And then I think, why these patterns? What about all the other patterns she must have seen over the many months of working on this project? It makes me wonder about how our memories work, and how beauty really does stand out and impresses upon us in common and individual ways alike. And just what is it about patterns that attract or repel us so? There are boundless patterns to be found in nature, and it's only natural that we would be quite attracted to unmistakeably human-made patterns. What interesting marks we leave on the world in this way. Clothing, walls, walkways, sometimes even in food. What peculiar animals we are.

Here are some of the individual paintings featured in this online-published work;

Layla cotton shirt worn over a bathing suit to MacaroniBeach
Jan 6, 2010, Mustique


"Pillowcase in my brother's spare room
March 3, 2010, Toronto"

Bathroom tiles in a cottage at locusts-on-Hudson
May 19, 2010, Staatsburg, NY

Wool carpet in the drawing room at Calke Abbey
Sept 1, 2010, Ticknall England

Aaand sidebar--whoa--travel much!?  I'd by lying if I said I wasn't envious. : P

More of Ms. Shapton's pattern paintings can be found on her site, here.

Also, check out the totally rad art book imprint she co-founded at jandlbooks.org.

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