Grantham, a self-taught painter and emerging Northwest artist, has truly captured our imagination with her playful works. Using a variety of media and acrylic paint on wood panels, Grantham paints a cast of doe-eyed, cartoon-like characters: Bunny, Robot-Panda, Girl, Carl the Squirrel, Think-Monster, Toast, Birds, and more populate her surfaces. The simple lines and stylized characters parallel Japanese anime, and the fantasy world they inhabit is wholly original. Appearing alternately wistful, pensive, punch-drunk, in love, or troubled, these characters play out classic themes of good versus evil, and romantic love. Often surrounded by cartoonish action-lines, scrawled text, or schoolgirlish hearts, they engage in mysterious antics over complex, mixed-media backgrounds. Cumulous clouds in washes of pale blues, greens, or pinks drift behind the characters which create a dreamy, pensive backdrop to the works. Like a Japanese manga series, these works pull the viewer into their quirky world. The plotlines, however, are left to the viewers own imagination.
Shifting, anime-like characters inhabit textured thematic worlds whilst dreamy washes of color and scrawled text emerge, providing a backdrop for untold stories that unfold before the viewer on acrylics and mixed media. These are the paintings of explorative Portland artist Trish Grantham.
The devoted Grantham brings her fascinating work to life on a number of levels, most notably, in the employment of a cast of elusively complex characters. Her style conveys elements of sincerity and reflection, hinting at the fragility of human emotion without delving into the realm of pretension.
Utilizing gorgeous arrays of vivid color, Grantham’s unique brand of work consistently satisfies the eye and captures the imagination. Grantham draws upon influences ranging from comic books and television to local street artists. Grantham’s works are designed to allow the viewer plenty of room for personal interpretation as plot lines conveyed by her characters are left wide open.
“The discovery of personal expression through art has been a huge force in my recent life,” explains Grantham. “I managed to find it almost completely by accident.” In fact, the talented Grantham began working with brushes only six years ago, showing her first collection after only four months of work.
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