Chantal New is an emerging artist working predominantly in mixed media drawing and painting. Chantal attained her BA in Art+Design from Trinity Western University in 2015. Having grown up on Vancouver Island, her artistic practice is profoundly influenced by the atmosphere of the West Coast and high regard for the natural world. Her minimalist drawings explore the importance of place and memory and the intersections between environmental and cultural geographies.
My work is a study, predominately in multimedia drawing, of the relationship between humanity and the impermanence of the world. As an artist my focus is to be attuned to moments and objects that are bypassed in contemporary culture – from the lowliest of plants to discarded photographs. Through acts of collecting and mark making, I search for the sublime in mundane moments and objects.
My visual and theoretical work has two main trajectories. The first focus of my practice is an exploration of memory and temporality. Often using old, found photographs as a departure point, I investigate the link between memory and place creating elusive narratives by dismantling photographs physically and philosophically. The photographs spark a curiosity and allow for speculation about an unknown time and place. As in the Soothing Struggle series, I use methods such as collage and photo-transfer to explore reproductive media’s ability to transcend time.
The second trajectory of my artistic practice evokes a vision of nature as a social and physiological place. I recognize the value of being aware of the landscapes we inhabit and call my viewer into a greater personal engagement with place. Informed by experience working alongside an environmental conservation non-profit, I explore the role of nature in contemporary culture. Through the use of botanical imagery and the layering of scientific text, as in Bulrush Study, I engage with issues of climate change and the current crucial state of the natural world. Through honest and vulnerable mark making, I reflect on the fragility of life in our changing and uncertain world.
Equally conceptual and representational, my work serves as a springboard into speculating about how we embody the past and how we can protect the future.