Dana Hargrove

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tumuli warm acrylic on cutout birch ply
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Tumuli Cool     acrylic on cutout birch      21 x 47.5 
Tumuli Warm  acrylic on cutout birch  29 x 44 
Absentia Red   acrylic on cutout birch   46 x 81 
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"Landscape, and how we manipulate it to fit preconceived ideals or corporatized molds, is familiar territory for my art practice. Whether I am exploring the urban environment with its homogenized grid of rectangular blocks, or examining how culture frames and re-frames landscape, I remain responsive to how our perceptions of the world and sense of place are shaped by human design.

As a conceptually based artist, I move freely between mediums, using painting as a familiar touchstone, yet often incorporating sculpture, video, and photography within my installations.

My recent work includes spatially illusionistic representations and three-dimensional relief paintings, which offer synthesized versions of geological outcrops, cairns, or even cityscapes. The works create spare, simulated landscapes where my constructions begin to play with the space of hyper-reality.

Classic Western movie sets, with their façade communities propped amid panoramic backdrops of desert and mountains have been an inspiration for my own painted facades; placeless, they act as stand-in monuments to the loss of natural landscape brought on by capitalism and its co-opting of the wild.

As we traverse the land, we may find our search for utopia leads us on a journey that offers, on the surface, little more than a façade of our ideals. Perhaps we need to go beyond the surface, past the representation, and back to the ‘authentic’ to find it. My work often takes the form of a shifting, sometimes transitory, monument that runs a discourse between the homogenization and capitalization of our spaces and our widespread experiences of displacement and disconnection."

Born in Edinburgh, Scotland, Dana graduated from Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art at Dundee University, BFA with Honors in Painting. She continued her education in the United States at Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, where she received an MFA. Today, Hargrove is a Full Professor of Studio Art at Rollins College, Winter Park, Florida

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Artist Statement