Observing things from above helps me make sense of relationships that I might otherwise miss. To visualize a ‘layout’ like a map allows me to play with information that can be extracted to one layer and abstracted in ways to multiply other effects and meanings beyond those directly observed. The experiments with layering are not as literal as collage, but some of the same process ideas apply to the decisions as the paintings evolve, where intentional definitions meet accidental juxtapositions and develop their own stimulus for a response. Of course, the homogeneity of paint media eliminates the dynamic of overlapping edges, but that challenge to engage within a single surface is something compelling to try. The work in this exhibit includes a variety of investigations, including some sequential observations from a single hike up New Hampshire’s Mt. Lafayette in the fall. The paintings from the hike are called ‘CRACKS’ and are based on zoomed-in observations and sketches taken at various geologic strains and erosion areas, as well as some new plant regeneration zones between rocks. These ‘CRACK’ paintings imply close range, but some could easily be interpreted as aerial views of Yosemite or someplace in the Alaskan ranges. Also included in the exhibit are pieces characterizing greater distances and that are specific to a particular air-scape/land-scape, where human intervention meets natural phenomena. The sense of location is named in the respective titles, but the place ideas are generalized more to reflect time, weather and lighting circumstances that may be consonant to those places. Finally, two pieces experiment with the fracturing of the atmosphere related to flying and are called ‘THERMALS’. These two pieces attempt to give a sense of a turning ascent in a glider above some of the same hikes in New Hampshire, previously walked, but from the detachment of being in the air at altitude. Having a background in design as an architect, as well as experience as a pilot has tempered and influenced many aspects of most of my work. I’m particularly interested in how patterns in nature relate to human designed patterns and how those two engage each other. How the interface of natural and designed patterns contributes to the specific character of a place or experience through the details of weather, light elevation change and context provide infinite material for these investigations.
Steve Imrich holds a Master of Architecture from MIT and a BA from Goddard College with a concentration in Studio Arts and History. He studied painting, drawing and sculpture at Goddard before focusing on architecture and design studies. Imrich is a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects, a LEED AP and has practiced as a designer and architect before setting off to painting full time. Steve also has a background as a commercial pilot and many of his paintings recollect memories of landform, atmosphere, and pattern recognition from flying. His current work experiments with interactions between designed and natural patterns and how that interaction may characterize a place. Steve lives and paints in Cambridge/Somerville, Massachusetts.