When artist Louise Captein moved to America from Amsterdam, she had no studio space. With minimal room to spread out and paint, she began crafting small collages out of colored paper, quickly assembling and reassembling shapes, figures and patterns.
Captein, an associate professor at Otterbein University, liked this form of expression so much that she began re-creating the collages on canvas as oil paintings. The works are copies of the original paper collage, painted as thin layer upon thin layer in order to keep the surface smooth.
The OSU Faculty Club is hosting a free show composed of those pieces, called “Expressions of Dynamic Form,” through October.
Captein’s playful paintings use color and decisive composition to tell a story about being alive. Not just alive, but living — and living to the point at which the day is swarming with yellows and reds and the night knocks with promises of tall tales and tangled flesh.
After a couple moments of exploring the layers of meaning in each painting, you can see that the bright, spontaneous, seeming simplicity of Captein’s work is not simple at all. But it is always relatable — whether the viewer is really living or just wishes she was.