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By imposing a digital identity on disciplines like collage, photography and sculpture, Toronto artist Brianna Lowe has created a style not entirely of this world. Grounded in the theme of natural landscapes, but draped in the ethereal colours and patterns of psychedelia, Lowe makes work that is at once familiar and playfully unsettling.

Lowe is also a member of Art from Concentrate, a collective that sells fine art prints at accessible prices, giving 50% of the proceeds back to its artists. Her work appears in the Negative Space exhibition, from June 20-26 in Toronto.

We recently spoke with Lowe about the collective, the need to hustle art, and the problem with cows.

Why did you get involved with Art from Concentrate?

They contacted me after seeing my work online. I found it an interesting way to expose myself and show my work. I had never done anything like it and it seemed like a good experiment. I've been very pleased with how it’s gone so far.

How did you feel about replicating your work in print-form?

Since I make a lot of digital work, the idea of selling prints had come up before. Usually, I do limited editions so printing in higher volume was a little weird, because I do work with paint sometimes and tend to favour unique objects.

Have you embraced the P.R. game?

I’ve come to embrace it more and more. When I first went to art school, I didn't realize that you had to hustle this way. I was taught the romantic idea that you could make work and somehow people would see it magically. But I enjoy the promotion because I get to interact with so many different people and artists.

Was there a moment in your artistic development when you realized that you wanted to explore natural environments?

I’ve always liked landscapes — that sort of physical space — as opposed to the body, in a formalist way. I think my "Eureka" moment came when I decided to use the digital approach. Being able to manipulate the images in that way, I could express what I wanted more easily than in painting.

Are you constantly seeking out new environments for inspiration?

It definitely helps, because you can feel how different environments relate to your body. I just finished a residency in Rotterdam, and the landscape over there was so different from what I’m used to, and it has affected my work in some way. But the Internet is a big source of inspiration as well.

Is there an ideal way to observe your work in a physical space?

I enjoy having my images presented with a video — seeing a static version of something with a moving likeness. And I like showing big things, because seeing something larger than a computer screen is always fun.

Does it take a long time before you’re satisfied with a piece?

Collecting the images takes a lot longer than the execution. I troll through the Internet and compulsively look up things like "grass" or "water," and then filter out what I don’t want. Putting it all together is quite quick for me. When things work, they work.

Do you have a go-to site you use?

I love NASA. Their image bank is one of the best. They can show all the weather patterns and the world’s irrigation lines. They have it set up very nicely. Whoever organized their website: I applaud you.

Are there any current trends in Toronto art that bother you?

The first thing that pops in my head is that I remember going to the Art Fair and seeing a lot of cow art! For some reason, rich people want cows in their house. I was so surprised.

Related >> Woman to Watch: Jillian McDonald | Art: Making Contact with Heather Saitz

New World(s) 01 from Brianna Lowe on Vimeo.

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