Erika Alonso

Watercolor, Ink, Acrylic, Oil

Winter Street Studios
Studio 22

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I'm a self-taught artist living and working in Houston, Texas.

My recent works, made with watercolor and ink, mix vision and pure chance. When I begin a painting, I have no intentions and no intended outcomes. I reject my compulsion towards perfection, and embrace the unpredictability of the materials and the way they interact with each other and the paper. I am at my best when I ignore my conscious thought—when I am alone with the materials and my hands and my eyes. This is how I create figures and scenes that are immediate and evocative, fantastical and, at times, phantasmagorical.

My method lies somewhere between action painting and automatism. I start with a few brushstrokes of water, then drop in some ink or color. From there, I “find” the painting through a series of additional layers of alternating watercolor and ink. I rarely come back to a painting; it must be done all at once. The end result is influenced by my immediate surroundings and experiences. What results is not quite abstract, but also not figurative; rather, it is many things at once. This ambiguity is at the center of my creative process: I want the figure to be the ground, the still life to be an abstract. I want the viewer to decide for themselves what they see.

I make these paintings because I feel compelled to create something that captures a momentary mood that can only be expressed visually, like a dream whose description defies both language and linearity.