Tar People

50"x36" approximately

Mixed media on tar paper


Sometime ago, I was walking around Home Depot, when I saw this beautiful black paper. I touched it; it was thick and very textural. I thought: I need to try it one day. I put it in the back of my head and the memory of it came back to me when I ran out of canvas sometime during 2017.

I brought it to the studio and started exploring the interaction of the paper with paint of different kinds and colors, unprimed and primed paper. Once I established what I thought work best I started using marks and gestures to create faces coming out of my subconscious.


When I felt more comfortable with the paper I started painting two people attached to each other. I was trying to create something perfect to my eyes, pleasant to look at it. I kept trying and almost every time one of the figures felt so out of place. They felt as they didn’t belong together, so I cut them apart. And by doing this I came to realize they neither belong together nor on the pictorial plane. Instead, they belong to a floating-like state where there are not attachments, no boundaries. Also, I started understanding that I wasn’t painting two people or many people but one person and their many facets.


This body of work is an exploration of the material and immaterial. Who and what we are.

© Juliana2020