Artist of the Week: Zaria Forman

Greenland #62 / 47″ x 70″ / Soft pastel on paper. From: thisiscolossal

When I first saw the work of Zaria Forman I thought it was a photograph. After scrolling through this post on Colossal I realized that the work was all made of chalk pastel. The size, scale, and detail of the work is impressive. If any of you have had the pleasure of using chalk pastel then you know just how difficult it can be to accomplish tightly rendered marks. The most incredible detail about her work is that she has travelled to see some of the remote locations that are her subject matter.

Tackling climate change or the documentation of extreme environments can be challenging endeavors for any artist, but for Brooklyn-based Zaria Forman it was simply an extension of a childhood spent traveling with her family to some of the Earth’s most remote locations. For her 2012 project Chasing the Light, Forman led an ambitious art expedition by sailing up the northwest coast ofGreenland to retrace the 1869 journey of American painter William Bradford. Along the way she documented the changing arctic landscape which she would use for inspiration in several large soft pastel drawings seen here. Her nearly photorealistic works exquisitely capture the atmosphere and mood of a landscape in flux.

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