FEATURED ARTIST: MYA KERNER
Far, far above, piercing the infinite sky,
Mont Blanc appears—still, snowy, and serene;
Its subject mountains their unearthly forms
Pile around it, ice and rock; broad vales between
Of frozen floods, unfathomable deeps,
Blue as the overhanging heaven, that spread
And wind among the accumulated steeps;
Mont Blanc: Lines Written in the Vale of Chamouni
Percy Bysshe Shelley
Piercing the Infinite Sky
I regard the mountains as stoic icons reflected by mortality, records of the movements of the earth and the torrents of the sky. They represent a collision, or maybe, a collaboration of the elements and forces of life. Though continuously rising or falling, the mountains stand, silent, weighing on the shifting fragments of the earth, moving at an incomprehensible rate.
In these works, I depict geological disruptions, carved moments and parts within the landscape. Records of denudation captivate me, as these notes present a segmented image of the whole. Mountaintops stand crisp against a stark white, reaching for an infinite sky. Descending are scratched lines, which break through the slopes, while flecks of white dapple eroded surfaces, recalling cooler seasons. These finished pieces linger on the threshold of completion, for what memory is complete upon its conception? The image often disintegrates as it nears the base of the painting, referencing the deposition of mountain and mythos.
I approached these white panels with turbulent, yet restrained mark making. Mixing oil paint above and across graphite marks, I soften or exaggerate the contours of the landscape. In some areas, the imagery holds, stable, while across the scene, a moment of textural play denotes action, erosion or sliding, moving away from the sky, down to the chaotic base. My paintings depict the tranquility of nature, while whispering of unpredictably and grandeur far beyond human conception or control.
As the threats of a changing climate reawaken our terror of the Sublime, we fear the loss of human constructs within the false façade of permanence. We are reminded, to Nature, the individual is irrelevant, lost to the vastness and susceptible to the ephemerality of being.
Atelier Drome + Mya Kerner : Revealing the Prcoess
Process. Whether it’s the work of a musician, an architect, a sculptor, or a painter, the transformative moments of process are what give life to the works an audience truly interacts with on a personal level. Were this process uniform and consistent among all artists as simply the steps one takes to create, final works surely wouldn’t resonate the same way. The truth is, just as many personality types co-mingle in our world, so too are there numerous processes – variances in insight, illumination, incubation, and ultimately realization.
When we at Atelier Drome met Mya after being huge admirers of her work, we were struck by something she said about how she creates: By starting with a simple act of making marks on canvas. This simple act of mark making creates a connection and understanding, but most importantly it breaches that critical first stage — making something where previously nothing existed. It fuels the next decision; informs the next emotion; triages a series of perceptions and opens a path in a dedicated direction. It’s a common misconception that a creative mind simply “creates” on the spot. That the work is there, the roots are easily tapped and a resonant piece emerges.
But without that pain, without that struggle, without that confusion and doubt, would any piece of work truly hold meaning to a viewer, even one unaware of the tumult behind the strokes? Knowingly or not, that process, that creation, that birth is what connects us to an artist and their work. It’s a factor that took our breath away when we first met Mya and needed to know more and to know her. And it was an intimate connection to process, to the making of a simple mark, to the creation of something where before there was nothing that moved and connected us, before we even knew it.