“Remember what you have seen…
As a child visiting my grandparents, I remember looking, really looking, at the paintings by my great grandfather, George de Forest Brush.
My grandmother took me to see The King and I on Broadway. I remember the intricate details of the costumes worn by Yul Brynner.
While studying art in Florence, I wove through the paths of Berenson’s Villa I Tatti.
When in Rhode Island, I like to go to the beach in Matunuck and watch the patterns of the invulnerable tide as it recedes from the shore.
Today, memory unfolds as I paint using an ancient technique while creating modern imagery that captures the beauty and excitement of the contemporary world around me.
‘…because everything forgotten returns to the circling winds’-Navajo Wind Chant”
Raised on the Rhode Island coast and classically trained in art and design in Boston and Florence, Georgia Nassikas works out of her studios in Virginia and New England creating reflective modern images in wax and oil. She mixes beeswax from her own hives with pigment and damar to create luminous pieces that both calm and challenge the viewer at the intersection of the natural and the abstract.
Across the Potomac from Washington, D.C., her studio overlooks rolling gardens and woods. From the windows she can see the blue and yellow beehives that form an elemental part of her artistic process. The hives, as images on the canvas, and the beeswax, as a medium for encaustic painting, figure in her recent works.
Although her themes and subjects shift – this year the sound of surf and the hum of bees echo in her work – the interplay of the natural and the abstract, classical and modern remain a constant dynamic in her painting.
Heating, mixing, layering, scraping-these core techniques of the ancient art of encaustic painting underlie and empower Nassikas’s engaging recent works. She combines beeswax from her own hives with pure pigments to deconstruct the world we see and experience in both settling and unsettling ways. Perspectives shift, solid forms lift and fall, light glows seemingly from beneath the highly textured surfaces.
Her embrace of the tension between abstract and representational enliven her imagery and inspire the viewer to see the essential forms, lines, and colors in a landscape or object. Echoing her art, Nassikas challenges us to scrape away our visual misperceptions, to add new layers of insight, to reflect on the fine balance, at art’s best, of final composition.