Cathleen Sullivan's Biography
I am a recent transplant from Long Island, NY, where I created a ceramics studio that allowed me to teach and collaborate with local artists. Shortly after, I returned to college to earn my BA in Visual Art, a life-long dream that came to fruition in 2021. Since retiring as a court reporter and relocating to the beautiful state of Florida in 2021, I now find my inspiration renewed with the tropical influence that surrounds me and excited for the future and the ability to focus solely on my art and this wonderful community that has embraced me.
My art is experiential. It encompasses many forms of mediums to express myself, from abstract to realistic. I’m a texture junky and very process-oriented. I love to dig down deep and scrape away work in encaustics and mixed media.
I love carving into clay and pushing the limits with glazes and forms I create. I fire textural and themed Raku pieces that I mount on panels to form sculptural paintings. I enjoy exploring and exploiting different mediums, combining them, and ever pushing the envelope. My voice is bubbling with possibilities and all things artistic.
My practice is diverse. I enjoy mixing media, learning new methods of working and importing, say, printmaking into ceramics or ceramics into printmaking. I’m technique oriented in that I learn everything about a medium which I later exploit and express in new and innovative ways.
My practice lies in ceramics, printmaking, photography, painting in oil and cold wax, encaustics, and acrylics. I love jumping between these different mediums, allowing me to keep my work fresh, new, and exciting as each practice informs the other.
I work with encaustic wax monotypes created on a hotbox to encaustic paintings with shellac burns utilizing torches. Encaustics has expanded into printmaking utilizing encaustic wax medium mixed with Damar resin to create texture on collagraph plates that I run through a press using Akua inks and release agents. This is extremely process-oriented utilizing encaustic in an altogether different way than intended – printmaking – resulting in prints that are embossed and appear organic and ethereal.
For abstract painting, I enjoy using oil and cold wax. I have melded my oil and cold wax paintings with prints by utilizing a silicone parchment paper technique. Following completion of an abstract painting, I will rub a parchment paper print into the tacky painting. The source of my prints are photographs from my personal library of places visited. I will take those experiential images and alter them in photoshop, print them on parchment paper and integrate them into my painting to get this fabulous mix of abstraction and realism, the dichotomy of the two exciting!