Elizabeth Pratt is an InLiquid Member and visual artist with a focus in painting and drawing. Her work tackles subjects like anxiety and healing through the symbolism of knots and weaving. She describes her practice as “highly intuitive and open, evolving in the moment, like a living being, a wild thing.”
We wanted to get to know Elizabeth better and understand a bit more about her practice and the projects she’s currently working on. Scroll down to see a selection of her works and read our interview with her.
InLiquid: How and why did you choose to pursue art as a career?
EP: I’ve always felt the need to interact with the world in a creative context, so art was a natural choice for me. It’s where my particular skill set lies. And I believe that art is important. It's what makes us human. So that's where I want to focus my energy.
InLiquid: Where do you find your inspiration for your work?
EP: By working, honestly. I try to draw as much as possible. It’s the quickest way to find out what’s going on in my head. I have ideas that are always floating around, that I may or may not be conscious of. When I put a pencil on a piece of paper, they come out.
InLiquid: Can you explain this series of paintings? Clearly there’s a common theme of knots throughout the pieces, what is the significance of these themes?
EP: The knots are a symbol of the tension and anxiety of the pandemic; they also represent unity. I like that the one symbol can have both negative and positive aspects. The weavings are a continuation of the idea of unity, an untangling of the knots and, by combining forces, making something comforting and useful.
InLiquid: When creating art around subjects such as anxiety, I know it can often feel strenuous to the artist to have to summon those negative feelings in order to use them as a vessel for creating. Is the process of creating art cathartic to you in some ways?
EP: Absolutely! It was an intensely therapeutic act to scrutinize the negative emotions that I and so many others were experiencing and turn them into something beautiful, like an oyster making a pearl. (Oysters must be so well-adjusted!)
InLiquid: Are there any specific artists or artistic styles that you feel have heavily influenced your own work throughout the years?
EP: Sigmar Polke, Gerhard Richter, Albert Oehlen; I seem to have a thing for the Germans. Too many others to list, both German and not. I’m inspired by many types of art: pop, abstraction, collage; what interests me is the idea behind the art and how it has a presence even without being understood. It’s a kind of magic.
InLiquid: Are you going to continue to purpose this theme of knots and weaving further? Do you have any other projects on the horizon?
EP: Right now I’m turning my 3rd food into a studio, which I’m very excited about! And I’m working on a series of flowers, in honor of spring. (One of them, Bud, is included below.) I tend to work in a circular pattern, exploring new ideas and incorporating them into familiar themes. So the knots and weavings will continue to manifest in new contexts, which I’m looking forward to discovering.