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Art & Life with Arielle Austin

Today we’d like to introduce you to Arielle Austin.

Arielle, please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
Though my story as a creative began in childhood, it wasn’t until my last few years at California State University Northridge while pursuing my degree in Graphic Design that I really fell in love with painting. There was something about the tactile nature of creating and the presentness that painting so gracefully demanded that captured me.

Once the classes ended and graduation had passed I began focusing on my “practical career” of being a Graphic Designer. Yet, shortly after, I fell deeper into a season of depression and craved for a way out. I craved for something that would help unravel the thoughts in my mind and break through the fog and static. It was then that I remembered my love of painting and the joy, beautiful frustration, peace, and spiritual connectedness I felt when I brought brush to canvas. So I’d come home after long days of my customer service and design jobs and paint. Totally unsure of myself, fear, tears and all, but simply present and hopeful for the transformation in the process. It was and still is, my moment to meet with God – to pray without words, to let my intuitive movements guide me, to understand myself better. A lot of the time, my paintings are like a visual diary or prayer journal entries. Fast forward to four months later, and the work that was simply created as an outlet was now being hung in my first solo show in 2014. It was then that I began calling myself an artist.

And here we are, over five years later, a move from Los Angeles to Austin, numerous solo and group exhibitions, lots of hard and exciting work, and hundreds of really honest paintings later.

Can you give our readers some background on your art?
Initially used as a tool for personal therapy and spiritual connectedness, my process-based work explores the intimate relationship between subject and viewer with layers, texture, and details. It’s a practice in staying present while resolving abstract plays on color, composition, and texture. In experimenting with this process, using paper, modeling paste, and layers of color, my work compels the viewer to take a closer look – to become intimate with the art, resembling our very own human nature and desire. To be fully seen and known and appreciated from afar and even more so once our layers have been examined.

One of the greatest compliments I’ve received is, “I can see God in your work. It’s as if He is painting alongside you.” My hope is that anyone can find a piece of themselves in what I create. And to get even a glimpse of God in company with the image of one’s self that’s seen, known, understood, and loved – that would mean everything.

Do you think conditions are generally improving for artists? What more can cities and communities do to improve conditions for artists?
It such an awesome time for artists to be free to pursue their craft! There’s no doubt that social media has played such an influential role in both how artists are perceived and seen. Not without its pros and cons, of course. There’s one thing to have a platform to share and connect others to your work, and it’s another thing to be actively and tangibly supported in it. From creating decent spaces to showcase to protecting affordable and safe spaces for creatives to work in, to actually purchasing art from the artists around you. It’s all so crucial to maintaining the creative integrity and soul of each city. Art and artists matter, and there should be both more discussion and action behind the disparities and truths.

What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
Although I am hoping and entirely open to expanding my work into other parts of Texas and the country, for now, one can find my work online, as well as local shops like Silk & Sage Design Studio. I often participate in the annual East Austin Studio Tour, as well as pop-up art shows with atxGALS. I can also be found leading Process Painting Workshops around Austin, Texas.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Kara Elyse

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