I have a lifelong attraction to color, music and an insatiable urge to use my hands and record my immediate visual world. As a child, sculpted and I vividly drew and painted for the joy of mark making as I recorded my young world of TV programs, school trips, city streets, my cat, imaginary flowers and more. In my painting studio work today, I combine invention with the details of my observed world. I have honed my focus to the beauty of nature and a concern for the environment, expressed in the realization of form through color.
Painting in watercolor on paper, I bring together field observation, gleaned from my open-air work, and imaginary compositions to create illusory landscapes. At the core of the compositions in the “Tornado Series” a Tornado form serves as metaphor for unbridled natural forces that meld with images of life cycles of insects, bird’s nests, plants and tree roots. Recently, I have been intrigued by the study of soil. “Regeneration Tornado” depicts a tree’s roots as they penetrate the ground, intermingling with nocturnal organisms and traveling down to where life becomes microscopic. In the work “Moss Landscape” I explore magnification of miniature worlds. My “Root” paintings tend toward the abstract and imagine the life cycles that take place out view of the human eye.
I find the painting process a delight. I have an ongoing experimental approach in which I have developed a method that utilizes salt and resist that guides the pigment. I then improvise with the spontaneous forms and accidents of color to purposefully develop the imagery.
Following an urge to expand my sensory experience and that of my audience, my painting subject matter propelled me into the creation of 3D objects and multidisciplinary projects. My installation work utilizes found materials such as barbed wire, feathers and wood, combined with iron wire. I have chosen to repurpose man made and found materials to reincarnate them into an effigy of the habitat and animals we have lost and will lose.
My performance work combines music, dance, audio and digital technologies with painted processes. Environmental themes from my paintings and object making are reinterpreted through movement, sound and visual fragments to engage concerns about the fragility of the planet.
What I create in all mediums is meant to inspire contemplation of the aesthetic and often overlooked complexity and beauty of nature and indirectly interrogates the relationship between humans and their effect on natural habitats.
Pamela Casper was born and raised in New York City.
Her formal training began at the LaGuardia High School for Music and Art where she was granted the Kerner award for creativity. Pamela received her B.A. from Swarthmore College majoring in psychology and painting with Harriet Shorr. Following Swarthmore, she moved to Paris for two years to paint and study the great masters in the museums of France and travel independently. She learned to speak French fluently.
Pamela Casper returned to New York City where lower Manhattan became her subject. She developed a series of “Break Dancer” drawings that were exhibited in a solo show at Galerie Shirley in Geneva, Switzerland. Pamela also exhibited these works at the Pastel Society in New York City in 1989, where she received an award of distinction.
Forays into the country inspired outdoor painting and country landscapes replaced the cityscapes. Pamela’s landscapes have been shown throughout New England and in France. Her still life work has been exhibited at the American Watercolor Society in New York City and at the Arts Forum gallery on 57th Street, NYC. These works were acquired for many individual private collections.
In addition, Gourmet Magazine and Fine Cooking Magazine have published her watercolors. Her textile designs appeared on the ties and scarves of the fashion designer, Nicole Miller.
The birth of her twins in 2002 inspired concerns for the longevity of nature for generations to come. Pamela shifted her focus to the beauty and fragility of life cycles in nature developing her Tornado Series in her Tribeca studio. In 2012 she expanded her realm of expression and was accepted into the EMerge residency at Earthdance for Living in Massachusetts, where she developed a collaborative performance piece based on her Tornado paintings and designed sculptures installed during the performance. In 2013 she was invited to create an installation called “Abandoned Nests” for an exhibition in the Mindener Museum in Minden Germany. In 2015 she exhibited her Ghost birds, on Governors Island.
Pamela Casper continues to be captivated by the natural world and her concern for our ecology. She paints in oil and watercolor and works three dimensionally with metal wood and found materials. Since 2014, Pamela lives and maintains a studio in Bedford Stuyvesant Brooklyn with her husband and boy/girl 14-year-old twins.