Swedish painter, Sigrid Sandstrom, exhibits twelve of her newest abstract paintings at The Company in downtown Los Angeles from March 14th through April 18th. Sandstrom’s strength is revealing the paradoxical in both painting and nature. Even the artist’s preferred technique is an oxymoron–the transparent layering of opaque whites. Decision making, editing, working, and reworking are crucial elements of Sandstrom’s finished work. She purposefully leaves behind squeegee smears, paint drips, and brush marks that not only reference her process, but also signifies her work. Milky acrylic washes, often of snowcapped mountains and angular glaciers, sit underneath layers of planar geometric shapes. The polygonal shapes contrast in a variety of ways: irregular vs. regular, convex vs. concave, and rough/torn edges vs. hard/masked edges. Though the shapes are painted, they are made to look as though they are torn paper collage, textured pieces of wood, or see-through strips of masking tape. The shapes’ faux edges are yet another reference to painterly fabrication and thus, process. In her artist statement, Sandstrom mentions ” the cumulative activity of adding layer-upon-layer is the evidential aftermath of mental engagement which, in turn, insinuates and provokes the next painterly response.” By constantly juggling interactive variables, the artist explores the self-reflexive nature of decision-making and the creative process.
In 1997, Sandstrom received her B.F.A. from Academie Minerva in The Netherlands, and in 2001, an M.F.A. in painting and printmaking from Yale University. She is the 2008 recipient of The Joan Mitchell Foundation: Painters and Sculptors Grant as well as the 2008 John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship. Sandstrom’s paintings are in permanent collections at the Moderna Museet, Stockholm; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, TX; Ulrich Museum of Art, Wichita KS; and Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, CT. Currently, she lives and works in Stockholm.