Stacey Durand studied printmaking and art education at Montserrat College of Art and received her Masters of Art in Teaching Art from Salem State College. After living on the North Shore for nearly ten years, Durand return home to New Hampshire, settling in the Seacoast where she lives and works. She is currently the gallery manager of the Lamont Gallery at Phillips Exeter Academy. Durand has shown her paintings and collages in a number of galleries throughout New England and her work is in private collections throughout the country.
“My work has been very much influenced by the places I have lived and the communities I have called home. Over the years I have explored many seacoast and mill towns in New England and find myself drawn to the regional character of these coastal communities. These neighborhoods are often filled with old homes and buildings that are packed together tightly, creating interesting, crowded arrangements and compositions. I fell in love with the way these buildings relate to each other; the houses on some streets are nearly on top of each other they are so close, the power lines cross the sky and zigzag over the streets to connect the buildings, and the tilted telephone poles lean into the warped houses.
These overlapping homes and quirky neighborhoods have been the subjects of my work as I am drawn to the layers and connections that these environments create. I work from photographs of actual communities; I explore the streets looking for interesting compositions and try to find overly exaggerated examples of the types of buildings and neighborhoods that I find compelling. I then layer and overlap images I have taken to find connections between the buildings that do not exist in the real world. These newly created collaged landscapes become slightly abstracted compositions. Within this process of removing buildings and neighborhoods from their original context and combining them with different environments, I create new connections, relationships, and ultimately new communities.
I then enhance and alter these collages through many layers of acrylic paint, image transfers, and graphite. I continue to wrap the image from the front of my paintings onto the sides of the piece giving the impression that the landscape extends beyond what is created on the front surface of the painting. By using this technique, I want my paintings to be viewed more like an object rather than a traditional painting hung on the wall, enabling the viewer to interpret these newly created communities with some familiarity and personal connection to their own neighborhood.”