Ruth Gendler

Statement | Bio

I often explore similar imagery when I make prints and when I paint, and yet I find the rhythms of printmaking and painting are very different. I tend to work on prints quickly and in series and paint slowly.

My art is inspired by the shapes of leaves and bones, the geometry of squares, the lines that form into ladders and bridges, the curves of the human face. I love the bowls that hold water and air and qualities that seem invisible. I don’t so much complete a body of work and leave it behind as revisit certain images at different times and in different media: painting, collograph, monotype, drawing, and lyrical non-fiction. At my best moments I feel like my art becomes a kind of metaphoric praise song to the immense and intimate beauties of the natural world.

I love the languages of art. The vocabulary of shapes and color and texture, the conversations between a large circle and five small ones, between a ladder and the moon, between a storyteller and the place she lives.

Being an artist has offered me a way to practice developing my vision and to work with the knowing of the senses; to follow my hands, to ask questions with curiosity and courtesy. Making art is part of how I make sense, how I see my experience. It involves listening as much as making, patience as much as urgency.