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Copyright Marla J. Loss, Mixed Media, 28" x 36"


Original: Private Collection

1st Place Mixed Media, Woodlands Art League Juried Show

Every art piece solves a problem in some way. This one includes random elements that still hang together visually. Produced in a college class during my “angry” phase, it is by far the darkest picture I’ve ever done, and I’m not talking about tonal values. I was aiming at an unsettled feeling—like something is wrong, but it’s hard to know just what. 


The inner rectangle is the vital unsung feature unifying all the disparate images. Before I drew in this fake “mat,” I was despairing—the picture was falling apart. Then I saw another student’s drawing lying on a table with a black rectangle tying everything in her picture together which totally solved the problem. I thought that she was a genius, and wished that I had come up with such an effective, simple solution. As I approached her drawing, I realized that she had done nothing of the kind. There was simply a black mat lying on top of her drawing. I couldn’t believe my luck! She hadn’t solved the problem at all—I had!

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