The Visual Field is a Container

July 25th, 2016|Art, Exhibitions|Comments Off on The Visual Field is a Container

Adams – The Visual Field is a Container
The Visual Field is a Container, 60 x 108 inches (triptych), acrylic & mixed media on panel, ©2016 Deidre Adams

I just finished another painting in my Metaphors & Mysteries series. These works will be part of an upcoming solo show at Point Gallery, Denver, opening Aug. 5. The series is based on concepts detailed in “Metaphors We Live By,” by George Lakoff and Mark Johnson. (See other works in the series here and here.)

The title for this painting comes from Chapter 12, “How Is Our Conceptual System Grounded?” – page 58:

… We experience ourselves as entities, separate from the rest of the world – as containers with an inside and an outside. We also experience things external to us as entities – often also as containers with insides and outsides. … We experience many things, through sight and touch, as having distinct boundaries, and, when things have no distinct boundaries, we often project boundaries upon them – conceptualizing them as entities and often as containers (for example, forests, clearings, clouds, etc.)

As in the case of orientational metaphors, basic ontological metaphors are grounded by virtue of systematic correlates within our experience. As we saw, for example, the metaphor THE VISUAL FIELD IS A CONTAINER is founded in the correlation between what we see and a bounded physical space.

If you become aware of the painting as an object, you can think of it as being rather like a window, which is a boundary within your visual field. In most but not all paintings, there is an implied continuation of the visual field which you can’t see but may imagine.

I started this painting in late 2015, so I finished it in less than a year – pretty fast for me! Here are some in-progress views:

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January 2016

Adams-2016-05-20 17.22.41-
May 2016

Adams-2016-05-30 18.14.03-
June 2016


And some detail shots of the finished painting.

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July 25th, 2016|Art, Exhibitions|Comments Off on The Visual Field is a Container

Colorado Women in Abstraction opening reception

July 16th, 2016|Art, Exhibitions|Comments Off on Colorado Women in Abstraction opening reception


Last night was the opening reception for Colorado Women in Abstraction, an exhibition of  “the work of women artists who have been influential in the abstract movement in Colorado” at the Center for Visual Art in Denver, Colorado. I’m so honored and grateful to have been included in this exhibition, along with the work of many women whose work I admire greatly. My heartfelt thanks go to Guest Curator Michael Paglia, (art critic for Denver Westword newspaper, art ltd magazine, and author of books Colorado Abstract and Texas Abstract), Cecily Cullen, Managing Director and Curator of the Center For Visual Art in Denver, and the many other people who mounted the exhibit and did countless other things behind the scenes. Thanks also to friends & family who came out to support me.

It was so great to see old friends and meet new ones. Here are a few of the artists I was able to snag for portraits beside their work. Unfortunately, there wasn’t time to meet all of the wonderful artists. I also didn’t think to get a listing of all the artwork titles, but I hope to rectify that matter before too long.

Adams-IMG_2850-Jane Guthridge

Adams-IMG_2864-Sabin Aell 

Adams-IMG_2865- Skyler McGee

Adams-IMG_2866-Carlene Francis

Adams-IMG_2870-Deidre Adams

Adams-IMG_2896- Margaret Pettee Olsen

Adams-IMG_2898-Teresa Booth Brown

Adams-IMG_2900-Tonia Bonnell

Adams-IMG_2903-Amy Metier

Adams-IMG_2908-Wendi Harford


We had a huge turnout for the opening. It was a wonderful evening! A few more scenes from the opening:

Adams-IMG_2852-Cecily Cullen introducing Michael Paglia

Adams-IMG_2861-Hugh Grant, Founding Director and Curator for the Kirkland Museum of Fine & Decorative Art






July 16th, 2016|Art, Exhibitions|Comments Off on Colorado Women in Abstraction opening reception

Seeing is Knowing

July 2nd, 2016|Uncategorized|1 Comment

Adams-Knowing is Seeing-
Seeing is Knowing, 60 x 108 inches, acrylic & mixed media on panel, ©2016 Deidre Adams

This is the next painting in the series Metaphors & Mysteries. My titles come from recent readings in “Metaphors We Live By,” by George Lakoff and Mark Johnson (University of Chicago Press, 1980, with Afterword, 2003) . I’ll leave you with a quote from Chapter 30, Understanding (p. 231):

When people who are talking don’t share the same culture, knowledge, values, and assumptions, mutual understanding can be especially difficult. Such understanding is possible through the negotiation of meaning. To negotiate meaning with someone, you have to become aware of and respect both the differences in your backgrounds and when these differences are important. You need enough diversity of cultural and personal experience to be aware that divergent world views exist and what they might be like. You also need patience, a certain flexibility in world view, and a generous tolerance for mistakes, as well as a talent for finding the right metaphor to communicate the relevant parts of unshared experiences or to highlight the shared experiences while deemphasizing the others. Metaphorical imagination is a crucial skill in creating rapport and communicating the nature of unshared experience.

Lately I think a willingness to negotiate meaning is sorely lacking in our discourse. Exploring the reasons for this is beyond what I’m willing to go into here, but I will say that I myself am not immune to the urge to shut down my tolerance when confronted with ideas radically different from my own. I like to think that artwork has a function in the furthering of shared understanding, even if at a minimum merely providing some alternative ways of looking at the world.

Here are some detail views of Knowing is Seeing:

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July 2nd, 2016|Uncategorized|1 Comment