Pardis Amerian


Photo: Brandon Brookbank


Pardiss Amerian’s practice is a process-based exploration of painting and collage. Her work addresses stories from the oral tradition, visual and textual form, and the lyrical potential of an imagined elsewhere. In her work, she imagines new stories that highlight pressing issues and encompass organizations, including those of the disadvantaged, the excluded and the non-human. These stories embody a change of scale, told through language, flora and figures, both abstract and familiar.

« Expecting to complete my MFA program in the summer of 2021, this residency seems like an excellent opportunity to establish dialogue with other participating residents, the community and the land. This will also allow me to further my study of illustrated gardens by engaging in hands-on research in a living garden. In addition to learning from observing the gardens, and having discussions around it with others, I hope to seek permission to work with the gardeners to collect clippings and material that fall away.

This will allow an accumulating body of material that is sifted through and sorted in new ways using collage and assemblage. Intuitive methods of composing new networks of meaning with fragments has been central to my practice for some time. The mobility and provisional nature of the fragment has inspired monoprinting applications as I respond to the living force of material through making. I envision simple acts of collecting and drying plants pressed in books to align with my exploration of fragments and give way to new meanings, forms and stories.

Preserving the brittle thin matter and transposing detailed outlines to fragments for printing embodies a level of care that differs slightly from my usual studio practice. Careful openness will facilitate tuning into the connections between the preserved gardens and the visitors, guests and hosts as well as the land and its stories. I hope to encounter acts of care in action, observing the guards, gardeners and other labourers at work. I imagine care mirrored in surprising instances of the community correspondence that will take place as part of the residency between strangers. Caring is at times considered too romantic or cliche, but I imagine it to be a gesture we all long for these days. »