With an unyielding interest in the formal explorations and history of abstraction, Carrie Gundersdorf’s drawings and paintings reflect her interest in how line, form, color, and spatial compositions can be derived from other source materials—concerns similar to modernist artists such as Ellsworth Kelly and Piet Mondrian. Her work articulates light spectrums as well as the progress of stars and planets through abstract compositions consisting of bars of color against atmospheric backdrops, taken from reproductions of astronomical photographs in books. Gundersdorf says, “My drawings and paintings refer to astronomical images that are created by time-lapse photography, spectroscopes, and computer-enhanced photographs. I find these images in books and on the Internet, and extract shapes, lines, colors, and patterns that serve as a starting point for compositional strategies.”
While her work is partially submerged in documentation and science, the observable mark-making and its subsequent imperfections gives the work a subjective human element and speak to a desire to draw not only what can be seen but also what can be imagined. The result becomes more about her distillation and construction of illusionistic space, rather than a direct reference to the original source. Gundersdorf exhibits a group of new drawings that continue her investigation of abstractions based on representational source material.