´You know I didn't eat anything for two days before I started this new painting. I stayed at home not communicating with anyone, trying to detach myself from the outside world. Then I woke up at 5 am, meditated, had a coffee and started to paint!´ - Rachel shared with me in our initial conversation few years ago. She acknowledged her search for purity and insight to access the right dimension which she can then translate onto canvas.
Rachel Garrard works using the proportions and dimensions of her body, as well as sensations and her ability to connect to the environment around her. She follows old myths and creates her own. She produces her own materials, which she accumulates through her lengthy travels and encountered experiences. Anything from earthy muds to desert rocks that she carefully grinds and turns into pigment. The process and ritual forms a crucial part in her production, it is the process that initiates and inspires the work. She goes on journeys for weeks or months, where she uses performance to produce the work, incorporating available resources such as fire, sand, water, snow or earth.
The series of paintings Residual were made over the ceremonial fire, used by the local shamans in the Yucatan peninsula in Mexico. Garrard employed the burning action as a symbol of letting go of the material life, while using the smoke and ash as a perishable symbol of what is left after everything else diminishes.