Aimee Mattila boasts master of fine arts degrees in jewelry, metalsmithing and sculpting, and also creates meticulously crafted illustrations.
But for her, none of these mediums quite match the cathartic release of abstract art.
Mattila dips, throws and splashes paint onto a canvas and somehow produces pieces of work that appear coherent. And soon, she will reveal her visceral creations to the Clackamas County community.
Mattila's abstract art exhibit at the Clackamas Community College campus in Wilsonville will run through Sept. 9.
"I do detailed illustrations, and after awhile, that drives me crazy because it's so meticulous and precise," Mattila said. "For me it's (abstract art) a lot more emotional and intuitive and it's a lot freer. It's kind of like you're dealing with the unknown in a way. It's this other realm that I'm playing in."
Mattila begins her artistic process by painting the entire canvas one color. Then, she hurls a mix of colors atop the first layer and finally adds a few more detailed wrinkles with her brush. The process creates unpredictable results, and Mattila appropriately titled the exhibit "Delicately Controlled Chaos."
Though freeing, the unpredictability can cause trepidation.
"It's scary, because I'll get this really nice canvas with this beautiful background, and then I have to take this next step, and it's like 'Ahh,'" she said.
One of her paintings depicts ruptures in outer space.
"It looks like the pictures of nebulas in outer space, and I like the idea that there is fabric to space and it's woven and there can actually be tears in the fabric of space," she said.
One of her biggest paintings, "Today's Energy Stream," took up a day's worth of energy to create.
"It's dynamic, and I feel like it has a good balance of everything. I feel like it's something I can look at for a while with some curiosity," Mattila said.
Through her exhibit, which she said would include 15-20 paintings, she hopes those staring at her work will feel an emotion — positive or negative.
"Everybody has different ideas and thoughts. That doesn't concern me so much, but I'd like people to feel something," she said. "Maybe they hate it. Maybe they love it."
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