Lisa Sanditz was born 1973 in St. Louis, MO. In 1994 she studied at the Studio Art Center International in Florence, Italy. In 1995 she received her BA from Macalester College, St. Paul, MN and in 2001 graduated with an MFA from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, NY. In 2005 she was selected by Creative Time and United Technologies to participate in an outdoor mural project where three commissioned artists, also including Alex Katz and Gary Hume, have painted site-specific paintings to be repainted on billboards in lower Manhattan. She is a 2008 Guggenheim Fellowship Recipient and currently lives and works in New York.
My most recent work has led me to investigate not only what is visible to the human eye in terms of the construction of the landscape, but also to consider elements of human impact that lies beneath the surface. Tiny colorful pollutants, like micro-plastics, used in beauty and health products are becoming endemic in waterways. My new paintings aim to connect the organic, inorganic and synthetic on a microscopic level, and translate this into a painterly language that brings these interior and exterior aspects of the landscape together.
My newest paintings have been inspired by my discovery of Fordite, otherwise known as “Detroit Agate,” which is hardened paint slag comprised of dazzling colors that results from layers of car-paint spray residue that accumulated around car factories and was discarded and discovered in the Detroit area. I create my own layers of paint sediment using 6-10 layers of color to build a subterranean foundation to the paintings. I then sand back into the surface with a unique technique that partially reveals these layers. I think of these marks as rambunctious scars in the landscape and the paintings too.
Using this technique in multiple paintings connects them aesthetically on and below the surface. The image that I paint on the surface is of a waterway that I have seen in person. Some of these scenes are iconic, like the Palisades cliffs in New Jersey, viewed from Manhattan, and some of them are vernacular, like trees in a swampy part of the road near my house in upstate New York.