When Only an Original Will Do
Mia Pratt's next United States art exhibit will be held in November of 2018 at Exposed gallery in downtown Phoenix, Arizona. An artist reception will be held on November 2nd from 6-10 pm in conjunction with the First Friday Art Walk. Mia's work will remain on exhibit through Christmas.
Mia will be presenting works from two major collections, titled "Bohemian Fables" and "Objects of Beauty." These paintings were created during a two-year period spent in Portland, Oregon from May of 2016 to May of 2018, with the addition of several works that will be completed in her Ajijic, Mexico art studio during the latter half of 2018.
Mia Pratt's Bohemian Fables collection originated with an idea to create a singe painting that symbolically embodied her own life's journey. The result was The Gypsy Queen, the first painting in what would later become a series of three works that express Mia's re-interpretation of The Three Graces. When the three were finished, Mia expanded her vision into the Bohemian Fables collection, which is still underway.
The Objects of Beauty collection originated out of the color studies Mia developed for her Bohemian Fables works. As she translated an abalone shell's beauty onto a tiny sample canvas, she knew she had to magnify it into a full-sized work of art. The expansion into a second collection allowed her to keep working when her Bohemian Fables paintings required drying time, and so she developed a pattern of working on two or more paintings at once.
Mia's style combines the loosely-defined strokes of impressionism with delicate areas of detailing to convey a romanticized point of view that blends realism with fantasy for an intoxicating visual experience. Her lush compositions tempt the eye through colorful feasts of texture and luminosity, while subtle symbolism and hidden narratives peak the imagination. She uses a combination of oil paints, impasto medium, metallic finishes and translucent glazing to attain the luminescent quality that defines her work.
As an oil painter I’m inspired to capture the beauty and essence of what is real, while expanding freely into the fables, figures and symbols of my imagination. My art expresses an intersection between these two worlds with vivid colors that exaggerate reality just enough to challenge its limits.
I can trace my artistic point of view back to a childhood collection of World Book Encyclopedias, where I spent countless hours exploring everything from the Persian queens to Indian lotus blossoms. This deep connection with my past reveals its presence in the thematic, symbolic and narrative aspects of my Bohemian Fables paintings, which depict costumed figures and living creatures in exotic garden settings.
I use a trinity of oil paint, metallics and gel medium in most paintings. I apply layers of gel-infused paint to impart texture, and lustrous metallics to add dimension to the work. With frequent dry times required in between layers, one painting often takes months to complete. While one piece of art is drying, I’ll choose a unique subject from nature and create a piece for my Objects of Beauty collection.
When I’m in mid-creation, nothing else matters - there’s just me and the work undergoing a focused transformation like caterpillar to butterfly. It’s only in the final stages of detailing, when I see the completed work finally manifest on canvas, that I enjoy the deep sense of fulfillment that drives me to create.