In her abstracted landscape paintings, Ruth LaGue pares composition down to its barest form. Through simple color, line and form, landscapes are invoked, rather than detailed. Ruth adjusts the placement of the horizon line in her paintings to suggest a range of natural formations. She stretches form, line and color to their limits, providing the least amount of visual information needed to understand the landscape. Her color palette is nuanced and each color is distinctly her own. She is deeply influenced by her childhood in Alaska and her travels to India. While in India, she found an indelible connection between the vast, wild landscape of her childhood and the limitless internal landscape of the soul. Ruth’s beautifully simplified landscapes become metaphors for the spiritual or otherworldly realms inherent in both nature and in the self.
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About The Artist
Ruth LaGue grew up in Alaska, awed by the incredible vastness of the wild landscape. Gazing at the expansive skies and majestic mountains as a girl, Ruth recognized that she was a small part of something much larger than herself.
Traveling through India in her twenties, she became consumed by the landscape of the spirit — that limitless interior universe that lives in each of us. The marriage of the two experiences ignited a lifelong quest to connect the outer and inner within her paintings.
To her, landscapes represent fragments of time that will never be again; intimate moments of communion with something greater than herself; quiet meditations to which she bears witness. They compel her to paint.
She finds that the most exciting part of the creative process is observing the juxtaposition of colors and textures as they form a depth of field — how a simple dark line next to a light field of color can come alive and represent a landscape in its barest form.
Ruth LaGue strives for visual economy in her work: Can a block of color represent a field of dry grass on an early spring morning? Can a simple, dark blue line that runs across the canvas embody the ocean’s edge at sunset?
She wants her viewers to imagine themselves within the landscape, recalling a memory or pausing to remember their wholeness.
Rhode Island School of Design
Bachelor of Fine Arts, 1986