The Violinist, 2011, mixed collage, 8.5 x 11 in.
Captive Escape, 2011, mixed collage, 8.5 x 11 in.
Greed, 2011, collage, 8.5 x 11 in.
Lust, 2011, collage, 8.5 x 11 in.
Dance with the Devil, 2011, mixed collage, 8.5 x 11 in.
Bride’s Gifts, 2011, mixed collage, 8.5 x 11 in.
The Suitor, 2011, mixed collage, 8.5 x 11 in.
The Muse, 2011, mixed collage, 8.5 x 11 in.
Amanda Beck’s works are like vivid daytime fantasies. Through archetypal themes such as birth, escape, captivity, confliction, and impotence, she reinterprets the world and converts it into something magical. Hands, umbrellas, mirrors, feathers, and tools symbolize those urges, wishes, and terrors that we would censor in the waking state.
Her images are strange and bizarre, mixing animal and human qualities. For example, she sometimes places the head of a person, that locus of reason, upon the body of an animal. At other times, she puts the head of an animal upon a human body, artfully combining savagery and sophistication, and joining reason with animal ravishment. These images are subtly threatening and unsettling. However, the “otherness” that some people might find uncomfortable or alarming inspires the artist. She does not flinch but shows us, through odd characters and environments, another way of seeing our world and nature. Often, the peculiar or strange causes us to stop, recoil, or feel uneasy. Nevertheless, curiosity beckons that bolder part of us to look harder, pause longer, and think more thoroughly.
Beck uses ethereal colors and loose lines to capture the whimsical, curious and unexplainable;our unconscious wishes and urges.
“Not knowing what is coming next and the anticipation of what lies just beyond our sight is thrilling,” states Beck. “Yet, we find a familiarity with each narrative. We share a universal truth with every other creature both real and imagined.”