Sarah Dougherty

Gallery Affiliations: Kantor Gallery

Region: Pacific Coast

I paint my immediate environment to understand a place’s histories and the perspectives of its occupants. It’s how I familiarize myself with home. As I sit outside to portrait everyday scenes that transcend the ordinary, I’ll often receive invitations to document other people’s sanctuaries; the interior extensions of their identities. I am interested in forming relationships with people and places I feel an aesthetic connection to—creativity based on resourcefulness and the ingenuity of bricolage. Relationships between native chaparral ecosystems, invasive but medicinal weeds, landscaping, and the city of Los Angeles provide endless compositions of our current state. I capture jerry-rigged casas, suburban sprawl, and the transmigrant collage-life of many cultures all at once through the use of cut-outs of layered paper covered with natural dyes, acrylic, and watercolor or oil, depending on the scene at hand. I value informal and formal learning opportunities, and Freinet pedagogy informs my teaching. Activism, gardening, art, and education have equal roles in my work.