Allison May Kiphuth (previously) shrinks the expansive landscapes found throughout the eastern United States into picturesque dioramas brimming with natural life. Through layered watercolor and ink renderings, the Maine-based artist creates a mix of quiet forest scenes and ocean habitats often under a dark, nighttime sky. She then stacks the outfitted wooden boxes, blending the marine and land-based pieces in varying positions that create new ecosystems with every combination.
Although Kiphuth derives much of her subject matter from the area around her home, she shares that experiencing new scenes is essential to her practice. “I haven’t been outside of Maine in over a year, and while this landscape is usually so expansively beautiful to me, without the contrast of other landscapes for perspective, it’s been feeling incredibly small,” a feeling that’s amplified by her living and working from a tiny home that’s just 8 x 20 feet.
The artist has a solo show slated for August at Antler Gallery in Portland, and limited edition prints of the piece above are available from Nahcotta. Get a glimpse into Kiphuth’s process and views of the scenery she references in her works on Instagram.
“Bond,” watercolor, paper, and pins in antique box, 4 x 6 x 2 inches
“Defense,” watercolor, paper, and pins in antique box, 4.625 x 7 x 3.75 inches
Left: “Den” (2019), watercolor on layers of hand-cut paper, sealed with encaustic, 6 x 6.5 x .5 inches
“Nightlight 2,” Watercolor, paper, thread, and pins in antique box, 6.25 x 4.875 x 3.25 inches
“Observation” (2019), watercolor on layers of hand-cut paper, sealed with encaustic, 6 x 6 x .5 inches