My mother would read me stories every night as a child. From “The Hobbit” to “Harry Potter,” these books fueled my passion for the fantastical, the whimsical, and even the bizarre, a passion that has grown deeper even as I have grown up. Such stories are more than mere escapist fiction; they are portals to other worlds, and more importantly, windows into the human psyche. The characters we create serve as proxies for ourselves, allowing us to vicariously confront every human experience imaginable.
I am a mixed media artist, who uses both traditional and digital media to create paintings, animations, stories, and the characters that inhabit them. My subject matter spans from the entirely fictional to the unique, strange, and beautiful visuals that exist in the world. In my most recent work, I take abstract concepts and verbal descriptions of mental states and emotions, distill their essence, and give them corporeal forms through images and animations. I am currently exploring Freudian ideas about phobias and their relationship to the human mind by envisioning them as anthropomorphic beings and visual scenarios. During the design process, I am inspired by investigations in cryptozoology, the idea of having no visual representation of the creature and having to construct its anatomy from fragments of hearsay and legend. I often combine psychological concepts with fairy tales, using storytelling traditionally aimed at children to reflect my own personal demons I have struggled with since childhood.
The resulting work reveals fragments of my soul while inviting the viewer to enter their own imaginative world. Despite the often fictional subject matter, I see this art as my interpretation of a profound truth: the world is a strange, diverse, currently broken, sometimes terrifying, but always extraordinary place.
© 2005-2014 by Rachel Cunningham Wang. All rights reserved.