Barbara Milne lives and works in Calgary, Alberta
Like many artists working within the genre of landscape, Barbara Milne works in both the studio and on location, producing a sizable body of paintings and drawings. Milne’s paintings are rich in symbols and metaphors. Her work derives from memory- the shapes, colors, and textures of the areas she visits and later remembers. Memory plays a complex role in Milne’s paintings. Memory not only involves the physical reconstruction of the artist’s experience of a place: memory embodies a recollection of previous paintings, histories, and styles. While Milne’s landscapes derive from real settings, the artist transcends the particularities of place, producing images that are richly layered and highly evocative.
In her more recent exhibitions, the artist begins with small collages and clippings from magazines, combining and juxtaposing eclectic imagery in a process of free association. This additional step of collage leads to a more fluid relationship between abstraction and representation. Surface qualities develop through additive (collage) and subtractive process. Like a palimpsest where the manuscript text is scraped away to be reused, the original path detours through obscuring and revealing.
Milne’s work is collected widely in museum, corporate, and private collections.