I currently work with branches, roots, sticks, and trees. I collect these raw materials from the mountains and arroyos around Santa Fe. I often wrap, or partially wrap, these forms with wire or cotton gauze and paint them an intense carbon black. This process de-emphasizes the physical object in order to distill the internal expressiveness of the form.
The sculptures flow calligraphically, as the wrapped pieces become more elemental and take on new life. The work may appear blackened and wounded, vulnerable and expressive. A branch, a root, or an arrangement of sticks and roots can simultaneously sensitize us to the exquisite beauty of nature and to the pain of our losses in an intimate and personal way.
Lisa Freeman’s current work is an assemblage of found materials and natural treasures, reminiscent of a raven’s nest with objects deliberately scavenged from the outdoor world.
A Studio Visit
Lisa Freeman’s current work is an assemblage of found materials and natural treasures, reminiscent of a raven’s nest with objects deliberately scavenged from the outdoor world. Her pieces are created using trees, bones, stones and other structural elements from nature. Roots and limbs from trees are painted black, or left raw to show their weathering. Often thin, loosely woven fabric is wrapped around trunks and branches and then painted a light-absorbing carbon black, creating forms that seem to exist eternally, but without seeking attention.
Ms. Freeman’s gallery space is white and bright, in stark contrast to the dark sculptures she creates. Her installations pour out from the workspace in the rear of the studio into the front gallery through a black, free standing sculptural doorway. The work area itself is a tactile environment in which Ms. Freeman has organized her materials on tables and in bins. Sculptures manifest from these collected fragments of life and death and are reborn through the black door into the exhibition area. Minimalistic sculptures on the walls are arranged to interact with each other and with the other pieces throughout the exhibition space.
In Ms. Freeman’s smaller compositional works, copper nails and wires are carefully placed with collected detritus, sometimes with painstaking precision, and sometimes chaotically. The shiny metals hold together these entanglements both physically and compositionally. While viewing all the sculptures together, one gets the sense of being in a basic and elemental world purified by fire or scorching sun. This body of work evokes feelings of an afterlife and the peaceful acceptance of the lifecycle of nature and its beautiful indifference.