Erika Rier, “PAGEANT”

Erika Rier
Portland, Oregon

photocopy, risograph, adhesive, staples, paper
Open: 8.5 x 10.5 x 40″

Artist Statement

My work is particularly focused on portraying the inner life of womxn as well as changing our expectations of womxn’s roles as a subject within art. It is my mission to create art depicting womxn engaged with their world and shaping their reality, rather than depicting passive womxn shaped by the male gaze. It is important to me that when a female-identifying person looks at my work they see their own struggles and realities and dreams reflected back at them and that they see the beauty we each possess is our ability as womxn to persist no matter the obstacles.

Using ink, watercolor, gouache, and graphite on paper I create work in a style I call folk surrealism. I’m focused on developing a visual narrative which I have been building over the past decade built with pattern, color, and line. I create pieces that draw viewers in with their bright colors and delicate line work but as the viewer delves deeper into the piece they find themselves immersed in a complex narrative. The narrative thread in my work is constantly evolving, each drawing is almost the next page in a wordless book. My work draws heavily upon folk tales and mythology as a means to examine themes of the modern world. I seek to twist narratives to make old themes feel new and of- the-moment.