SIERRA BARBER

 b.1991 Canada

OCADU Graduate - BFA (2015)

Sierra graduated from OCAD University’s Sculpture & Installation Program in 2015. She is based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Sierra is a self-taught encaustic artist, and has been working with the ancient painting technique for nearly a decade. Her practice explores the natural characteristics of beeswax as a material, creating a seamless bind between reality and the imagined. Her process involves a repetitive build-up of thin layers of melted wax that create mesmerizing forms specific to how the material was applied at the time. The layered process allows the wax to gradually grow and change on its own, transforming into controlled chaos that appears to have happened organically.

Using both planned and intuitive patterns, her recent abstract work balances her organic process within controlled boundaries. Working from the inside out, her technique relies on repetitive intuitive patterns to construct the textures and layers that grow outwards and yet follow along with the rules of the painting. The evolving forms are set against soft iridescent gradients that influence the transformative climate of the piece.

Throughout her professional practice, Sierra’s work has explored themes of preservation, transformation, the collection of memory, and virtual nostalgia. These concepts are re-imagined and retold in beeswax, pulling them back into a natural world to be analyzed and interpreted.

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