My paintings and drawings are both inquiry and discovery, each a voyage—part memory, part fantasy. The process is dialectic, the investigation of a truth through discussion, a conversation between the work and me (then the work and the viewer).
Choices are made, revisited, some removed. Their traces remain. Colour jumps to form, form instigates colour, relationships occur over a period of hours, days and months. They manifest in a "story" — a visual tale.
Story, Language and Sound
I was raised in an extended family of friends — "aunts" and "uncles" — from multiple lands and cultures. Parted from their own roots and loved ones, they formed a family for one another in a new land. While I was not able to understand the majority of the languages they were speaking, I came to know many of these individuals through the color, tone and nuance of their voices...
Elana Gutmann, Bâle 2018
Child of emigrants, child of strength and circumstance, a child with stories in place of history—I was raised on stories in place of documents left behind, in haste and of necessity. His story, then hers, and then another’s, and on and on, and so it was. In each “telling”, it became more clear: the truth of memory is a nuanced, varied truth. It belongs to the circumstances, to the perspective and nuance of time and place—it belongs to the teller of the tale. And to the one who is listening.
In my paintings and works on paper, collaborations, and in my video and sound installation works, the cellular experience of story—of abstract and tangible narrative—inform and lead my work forward.