Paula Menchen

Born in: 1970,Hornchurch Essex, UK
Lives in: Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
Education: 1992 BFA Fine Arts, Otis Art Institute of Parsons School of Design
1990 Parsons School of Design in NY.
Describe your art in 3 words: Lush, fragmented and tactile
See More Work:

Blue Fields

"I am a visual artist based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. My art process includes painting, printmaking, collage and installation art. Having majored as a painter in University, I use painting as a means of experimentation, exploring ways to capture the fluidity and energy of paint. I like to play with the ideas of vast spaces typically using landscape and seascapes."

What themes does your current work involve?
Ongoing themes I am investigating are questions of home, belonging; what is familiar and what is foreign, preservation and destruction.
Describe your creative process.
Mixing materials and ideas to develop a unique visual vocabulary I find the harmonious language between drawing, printmaking and painting. My process consists of researching all kinds of techniques on paper; stenciled, stamped, dyed and resist, creating a unique palette of color and textures. I build up multiple layers of paint, paper and cuts allowing for a spontaneous burst of hues vibrating to the surface.
What influences your work? What inspires you? Why do you make art?
Curiosity and the element of surprise! Blending mixed media painting and collages into a substructure of visual colors I deconstruct the surfaces in order to reveal a mesh of layers new and old. Overlapping and layering painting, printmaking and handmade paper to create an evocative layered work. These tactile surfaces create a visual tension between flat fields of color and textured patterns. With a love of paper, fiber and fragments I discover the intricacies of each piece reconstructing them into lush visual spaces.
What are your goals and plans as an artist in 2023?
I cherish the opportunity to have time to focus on my practice and ongoing research for my project “Landscapes”, “Still Life” and “Electric Fences and Stain Glass Windows”.
 I hope to have a solo show with the opportunity to share my work. I am excited for my upcoming Residency at Kala Art Institute AIR, Berkley, Ca. Residencies are magical time to delve deep within your work listening to your artistic voice and being inspired by new surroundings. There is a lot to look forward to this year!
What is the role of the artist today?
Pushing humanity forward, that is what the struggle is about as an artist. Unlocking human and creative potential to think, dream and then share these creative ideas with the world.  
What is good art? What makes a piece of art great?

Good art is art that connects with the viewer and make you think, it moves you and speaks to you in a way that is wonderfully surprising. Great art is art that you will never forget it stimulates all of your senses and captivates your imagination. It inspires you to want to create, it surpasses great and moves into marvelous and intoxicating. It embraces the soul and heart of humanity!

White Vase
Stained Glass Windows and Electric Fences
Still Life Flowers in a Glass Vase
Spring Yellow


This interview was published by Circle Foundation of the Arts. © CFA Press ∙ Images are courtesy of the artist

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