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Rae Braden

Region: 
North Slave
Community: 
Yellowknife
Associations: 
Phone: 
(867) 446-9906
Address: 
Box 93
Yellowknife, NT X1A 2N1

Artist Story

As a printmaker, my work is primarily on paper. I use techniques like monotypes and block prints to develop images based on my exploration of the northern landscape. I also use a lot of mixed media in the printing process - taking elements of outdoors and integrating them into the work. I enjoy connecting people to the landscape through the natural themes and elements incorporated in my pieces.

I love the different steps involved in making a print, putting all those layers together to make one finished piece. It always starts with something I have found or seen – like a great piece of paper, or bone in my hand. It then turns to a drawing or sketch and I continue breaking the project down into layers and turning it into steps. The piece is created and finished in my mind at the sketch phase.

I’m always inspired by the northern landscape and what is at my feet. I like the detail in the rocks and lichen, the ice, snow and shadows. I love the idea that we are connected to the land, and that our experiences can be shared through art.  

Artist Bio: 

Elements of the natural world are a recurring theme in my work, and whether working with printmaking, drawing or digital media, I am excited by the different and distinct ways there are in each medium to create desired effects to develop my ideas. Recently, I have been working primarily with printmaking. The versatility of this technique allows me to express my detail-rich images through drawing, painting, scratching, erasing and etching - elements of which are sometimes all used in an image, and reveal the manner in which the print has evolved to reach its final state. Although technically challenging, I enjoy the process involved in taking the time to think through each step of the print in order to achieve the desired effects of layered information, visual texture and contrasts of colour and light. I begin a piece by sketching an image, which will usually include elements discovered in found imagery or a photograph, which reflect my fascination with natural forms and rich surfaces. Material application is considered in terms of how it reflects the expression of the image as well as its relationship to the printing matrix, and I will often experiment with unorthodox uses of the application of image making materials to arrive at a desired effect. The focus of my much of my work is linked to the visual experiences and exploration of my Northern surroundings. Elements of found organic objects, geology, ice, birds and botany feature prominently in my pieces, and I enjoy exploring the macroscopic and microscopic relationships of each of these themes. I feel that growing up in Northern Canada has greatly influenced this interest and I enjoy making reference to the relationship wherever the image allows. When people see my work, I’d like them to feel the need to walk right up to it and explore the details which are created by the combined techniques and layers of information, which may appear abstract at that level, but then when taken in as a whole, create a visually rich image.

Last Updated: April 1, 2016

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