Known for her organic marks and energized brush strokes, Heather Pugh’s paintings explore relationships in nature that are at once grounded and in motion. Her large canvases are often home to rock-like contours enveloped by streaming light, swirling wind, and hues of clay, moss, deep pacific blues, and the rare blossom burst. Her abstract paper studies and representational wooden panels simplify this discourse through abundant white space and bold color blocking. Self-taught and highly influenced by the craggy landscapes and voluptuous horizons of the Western United States, Heather’s work has sold to private collections throughout Oregon, California, and Ohio and has contributed to public art spaces.

the why & how of it

At the coast, on a hike, in my yard—no matter the location, I’m always bending down to pick up stones, studying their crevices like old family photos.

Based out of Oregon and highly inspired by the rugged landscape of the Western United States, I create abstract acrylic paintings that speak to our kinship with this planet's ever-changing landforms. The geomorphic process, or alteration of earth's surface, can be fast and furious: a volcano erupting. But it can also be slow and practically invisible: rocks sanded down by a river's steady flow. 

​Life is like this for humans too—experiences, places, and circumstances working together, informing the topography of our inner and outer worlds. Many of us will live through eruptions, and most all will undergo slow continental shifts—the kind we only really see in hindsight. 

Through sweeping gestures, layering on top of, hosing down, scraping across, chiseling into—the canvas allows me to explore this mirrored experience. And in its resultant textures, I’ve discovered a shared language that is at once present and primordial.

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