Bonnie Gaskin’s identity as an artist manifested at an early age. Raised by an artist, she spent her formative years alongside her father in his studio. As a recurring subject of his work, his travel companion, and as soon as she could carry a conversation, his confidant, she received a haphazard arts education primarily from him. Her immersion in the world of making art is so deeply rooted that she considers it the most fundamental, unyielding force in her life, and those memories and experiences are what shape her work today.
Bonnie’s paintings are all about embracing an air of naïvety and curiosity. Every piece begins with the excitement of a challenge, the goal of conducting an experiment, and her love of the physical act of painting. In her portraits and still lifes she explores subjects that are familiar to her on a personal level: often a specific event, person or physical item. She aims to imbue her subjects with new meaning: a person becomes the actor in a story, an object is empowered with metaphor, or an event is appropriated.
Stylistically, she is driven to make connections between past and present. She is very much concerned with the question: what is real in this life? Her work evokes themes pertaining to humanism and global consciousness, the idea of the call to action, and the concept of the “message.” She tends to depict and explore what is ephemeral in life, existentialist thought, and the identification of invisible powers in small things, such as a single moment in time.