For me, painting with encaustic creates a state of totipotentia: a latin term meaning the ability for all things. Encaustic painting is filled with such potential. Since the medium is incredibly malleable and fluid, I am able to mix it with vibrant pigments and embed sculptural elements. I seek to illustrate the flow of water, the dense weight of the earth and the flashy and volatile qualities of fire. I hope the luminosity and movement of my work offers the viewer the same spontaneity and transformation I experience as I paint.
Shelley Wuitchik is a Canadian artist whose 15 year long artistic practice centres on creating mesmerizing abstracted paintings from her studio on Vancouver Island, British Columbia.
From Quebec City, her picturesque birthplace steeped in history, through the landscapes and coastlines of Atlantic Canada that nurtured her growing up, the majesty of the Canadian Rockies and now the Pacific shores, all forming backdrops to her storied life, the imprints of the land and the sea etched deep into her DNA, find themselves expressed in contemporary visual language through swirls of vibrant colours and layers of this ancient medium, unmatched in their depth and luminosity.
Encaustic (enkaustikos) is a Greek word that means “to burn in”. Heat and fire are used throughout the process, from melting the beeswax and dammar resin to fusing the layers of pigmented wax.
Her paintings are best described as a reflection of her life: the rich “texture” of her family, the “ebb and flow” of the seasons and the “burning” of memory into time and space. Using this ancient medium with the advent of present-day heating implements, Shelley Wuitchik creates visually stunning contemporary works of art that resonate with collectors from around the world.