Alli Gerrish is an acrylic and digital artist based in Boulder, Colorado. Diary of a Lockdown is Gerrish’s most recent body of work completed these last several years during the pandemic. Faced with the gallery world shutting down and her usual studio space unavailable, she began experimenting with digital creation on her iPhone using Procreate Pocket. The resulting collection of almost 100 paintings and videos quickly took on meaning as a visual journal chronicling the raw response to the events unfolding around her. The paintings themselves are whimsical abstractions, vaguely reminiscent of human forms and landscapes. Simple geometric shapes and subdued tones evoke a feeling of relaxation and comfort, as stripes, circles, and ellipses gently connect and intertwine. The recurrent hourglass shape in her paintings has come to symbolize herself, transforming individual and societal vulnerabilities into dreams for a better future, where joy and positivity rule supreme.
As she painted, she realized the software was recording every finger stroke and went on to create a series of experiential animations combining the recordings with voiceover narration and music. One piece in particular, Scar Tactics, epitomizes the meaning of the series: life can be full of challenges and even trauma, but art can shine a light on our darkest corners. It can help us realize that although things may happen to us that appear difficult or even awful, what we get through in life creates strength and beauty on the other side.