Website: Emily Ritz
Musician and multidisciplinary visual artist, Emily Ritz lives a life immersed in creativity.
Emily makes tender, exploratory work which draws as much on the harmonious swells and hollows of the natural world, as on personal experience and internal work around self-acceptance and self-love.
Her art practice began as a young child when Emily's innate creativity blossomed as Lyme disease and arthritis kept her more sedentary.
Encouraged by her parents, she began taking her art practice more seriously at age 13 studying at the Mill Street Loft in Poughkeepsie where she learned college level painting and drawing. In 2006 she began the painting program at California College of the Arts and soon switched to filmmaking. After graduating with high distinction from CCA Emily got back into her painting practice making detailed, organic landscapes from her imagination and never looked back.
Inspired by coral reefs and lush forests, Emily Ritz uses drawing, painting, sculpture and embroidery to bring her unique vision of beauty to life.
Everything she creates is done completely by hand and no two pieces are alike. Her love of repetition is quite apparent in the hyper detailed patterns that grow over each piece. For the past nine years Emily Ritz has been developing her own visual language depicting otherworldly landscapes called Lumplands, a playful term she uses to describe her creations. Ritz’s techniques have been developed in order to think as little as possible to let the images flow through in a blissful, natural way thereby creating a medicinal, meditative experience of creation.
As her body of work evolves, Emily has been including images of hands and her own body in the imagery more and more. This newer body of work is a direct and vulnerable expression of the human experience, rather than abstract botanical beauty open for interpretation.
When Ritz began Lumpland she was on the brink of being overtaken by Lyme related arthritis that would leave her in extreme pain and disabled at times. Her continued journey through the tangle of learning to care and love her body while feeling betrayed by it has resulted in a prolonged preoccupation with the self in order to heal.
Lumpland is Emily’s way of consciously connecting her emotional body to her physical one by visualizing how her art comes out and back in. How her emotions do the same and how obsessive patterns in her work and her life affect her physical body.