Influenced by color theory, design history and international traditions in geometric abstraction, I grew up in a household where my mother was a women’s clothing designer and my stepfather was an architect. These two very personal visions – my mother’s love of textiles and construction and my stepfather’s introduction to the classics of modernism – had a deep impact on my development. Their influences percolated up in intriguing ways. A key point in my work is color as communication – an associative, subjective relationship, based on a lifetime of visual memories. Rejecting the notion of abstract art as a “universal language” – my work hints at pictographic signs, logo-grams, alphabetic scripts and cuneiform writing. I am interested in the highly subjective responses to composition and color.
During the past two years, I have begun to expand the parameters of my work to include hand-printed textile installations, outdoor projects and sculptural works. Having long employed printmaking techniques in my paintings and frequently making reference to textiles and textile design, my linen installations bring together several of the themes in my work into a single piece. With the sculptural work, I have begun working with vitreous enamel on steel. This particular material combination is fantastic for its luminous glass-like quality, intense colors and its extreme durability.
Elise Ferguson lives in Brooklyn and works in Queens, NY.