Visiting Artist

Amália Couto

We are pleased to kick off our visiting artist exhibitions with the vibrant, contemporary works by Amália Couto.  We will be showing her work for the first two weeks of August.

Please join us for her opening at Gray Sky, which will coincide with the inaugural  Interbay Artwalk.

Camadas: Works by Amália Couto

Friday, August 14, 2015
5:00pm  - 8:00 pm
Gray Sky Gallery

Amália Couto, "Nested Lines"  2015

An Interview with Amália Couto

Julie Devine from Gray Sky interviewed visiting artist Amália Couto shortly before her Camadas exhibition at Gray Sky. 

JD: How did you come to painting? Where did you start?

AC: When I first started painting, it was more like an experiment.  I always drew since an early age, but never considered painting as a form of expressing myself.  I took on the performing arts early on, but never stopped drawing.  However when I found myself with the limitations of my other artistic expressions, I turned to painting.  My father and brother were painters themselves, so I thought I could try it and see.

I started painting in Seattle.

JD: What is your daily painting schedule like? 

AC: I work everyday, from around 9:30 to around 2:30 pm.  It’s very simple and disciplined.  When I get to my studio I check emails and my Instagram feed before I start working.  I do that so I can get everything out of  the way.

JD: I love the strong, saturated colors in your work and the energy they create. Tell me about how you are thinking about color; what it means to you.

AC: I think color. I dream color. My process of choosing color is very organic.  I don’t have a plan or any strategy.  I am not attached to any color either. I can work with a particular blue one day and a totally different one the next. When I approach a blank canvas, the only question in mind is which color is going to be the first one.  And I am thrilled when I get a surprising mix.  The thrill is very physical. 

JD: What can you tell me about the ideas behind your “Lines” paintings?

AC: I search for inspiration everywhere.  I read about architecture, interior design etc.  I saw a large photograph of magazines on a shelf but the shelves were absent and the only thing that you could see were the magazines standing against a white background.  That’s how it all started and I will always expand on it because it is a very clean and simple process, almost meditative.  It also reflects my idea about abstract expressionism.  It helps simplify it and tone it down from the urge of the imagination.

JD: When someone walks into your show, what do you hope they will grasp or enjoy about your work?

AC: I hope they get inspired.

 JD: Your exhibition at Gray Sky is titled “Camadas.”  Tell me more about the title and why you chose it.

AC: Camadas means layers in Portuguese.  I work with layers and layers of color to get the results that I want.  But it also reflects the idea of experience, the sum of it all.  “Camadas” as a metaphor of that compilation.

JD: How has living in Seattle influenced your artwork? 

AC: Seattle has a very creative energy very similar to the city where I come from.  It is a very inspirational city with its picturesque scenery everywhere. Seattle makes me happy and that’s the main energy of my paintings.