Raised in Oklahoma, Carrie is a painter, designer, and architect. She designs spaces for the exhibition of art while also researching the structure of cities and maintaining her own studio practice. For many years she was with Selldorf Architects as Associate and Designer. In New York City she worked with the Swiss Institute for Contemporary Art, Christie’s Auction House, both Brown and Pratt University, and with both commercial galleries and private collectors. She is currently working from a studio at Konstepidemin in Göteborg, Sweden.
I wonder about façade. The façade that keeps you at arm length, desiring an embrace; The façade that boisterously welcomes you in, wanting only solitude; The façade that merely hints, at what may be, a way inside.
I think about home. Homes generate identity / continuity / stability. Homes, in appearance and location, explain our position in society. Our lives are centered at home. Home is a place of pure refuge; the place we are most ourselves, our facades peeled away – relieving the pressures of society. Throughout many cultures the language of home connotes not just shelter, but warmth, safety, and comfort. Our homes also shape our relationship to politics, to society; we learn how we can affect our environment, we learn our position in society’s power structures.
How do our homes imprint on us, making us who we are? How do we as a culture arrange our ‘housing’ our ‘homes’? How do we provide access to home for our neighbors our friends our newly arrived? How do our structures of home exclude? Include? How do we find home?
Carrie Bobo’s studio practice is defined by an integration of autobiography and the very personal politics of place. Her paintings are rooted in portraiture and landscape. They reflect a special focus on place, and a distinct handling of composition, color, field, and line. These works explore how abstract composition and brushstroke can communicate history, politic, and personal experience. These explorations reference the history of color field painting and color theory while tying themselves to a minimalism enriched by the expression of the artist’s hand. Her intimate figurative vignettes reveal processes; they refer to the process of architectural construction through the development of two dimensional imagery in line and field. These works connect art and architecture, and explore cultural conceptions of home and belonging; they investigate façade, control, inclusion and exclusion; they are portraits of home.
I was raised in Oklahoma.
An Oklahoma of occasional, irregular hills, invasive cedars, and deep, broad, often dry waterways.
An Oklahoma of sparse suburbanism on a street named for Twelve Oaks.
I attended a farm school where sports was king.
This was home.
I was most happy in the summers, when I could dream of all the far away places in the books I read; places that felt more like home.
I met a woman in Birmingham, Alabama with glasses that I loved. She was an architect.
Betsy, my university chemistry research advisor, had always dreamed of becoming an architect.
I graduated from architecture school in Oklahoma and moved, by way of San Francisco, to New York City, a place with buildings.
I worked in architecture.
I fell in love with the Art Students League; the real melting pot of New York City.
I received an MFA.
I worked in architecture, and made paintings and prints and sculptures and little drawings, to see better, in all the moments between.
I thought about people.
I wondered about façade.
The façade that keeps you at arm length, desiring an embrace;
The façade that boisterously welcomes you in, wanting only solitude;
The façade that merely hints, at what may be, a way inside.
I made paintings about this.
I thought about home.
Homes generate identity / continuity / stability.
Homes, in appearance and location, explain our position in society.
Connecting art and architecture, my work explores cultural conceptions of home and belonging. My paintings and monotypes investigate façade, control, inclusion and exclusion; they are portraits of home.
How do we find home?