Layers are a key element in the multimedia works of Willie Stewart – layers of references, subjects, techniques, and physical layers of material directly on the surface of his work. Inspired by the Pictures Generation, Pop Art, and geometric realism, Stewart constructs vignettes using a mixture of the hyper-real and cartoon-like abstraction, moving between styles based on what the scene requires. Here, black and gray tree trunks repeat across two panels, with a few select trees cut from different material and applied onto the surface of the canvas. The surreal moon floats among the nighttime forest grove, as if setting the scene for a horror film. The highly detailed tulips are part of another layer, out of place in style, lighting, and mood. Based in New Haven, Stewart received his masters from Yale University and has exhibited throughout the US.
colored pencil and ink on cotton board, acrylic and u.m. vinyl on polystyrene board, and acrylic on canvas over panel
36 x 84 inches