Helen E. Becker
Reception: Thursday, January 1, 1970, 6-8 PMInquire
Helen Becker is an abstract painter from Ohio, currently living in Utah, whose bold works exemplify painting as a freeing act of self-creation and expression while also emphasizing the materiality and tactility inherent in the art of painting itself. Although she was previously an abstract oil painter, in early 2017 Becker attended a workshop where she was introduced to the idea of multimedia collage with acrylic painting. It was at this point that she realized that painting did not need to be tight and controlled but could be as truly free as affixing anything to a canvas. With this in mind, Becker has been able to harness the power of thick lines, bold colors, and many different materials as a means of breaking out of a depressive block and allowing painting to become a personal healing activity. Her confidence in this method of painting has allowed her to fully devote herself to creating stunning work.
Growing up around steel factories and interacting with her mechanical engineer father bestowed upon Becker an early and deep-seated fascination with how things are constructed. Throughout her life she has striven to understand the underlying structure of buildings, bridges, gadgets, and now particularly the superhighways that map our entire lives in today’s society. In her current work, Becker attempts to deconstruct the essence of what these highways are to us both physically, as means of getting somewhere, and psychologically, as expressions of how we move forward and flow through life. She then reconstructs the highways on her canvas, making use of portions of interchange diagrams in the creation of her compositions, as well as layering materials, such as rope and string, onto the canvas similar to the way highways are constructed, to create bold strips of color with realistic grit and texture.