© 2016 Willa Downing

Willa Downing, Artist _______________________________________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________________________________

Artist Statement


To make sense of the universe, we use a combination of disparate faculties that give us different forms of insight. As a scientist and artist, I can view the world through profoundly different lenses. Science is a powerful way of looking at Nature; it can reveal the immense complexity and extravagant beauty of natural phenomena from the vastness of astronomical space down to the level of subatomic particles. However, art’s connection is more visceral and evocative. Art can use irony and playfulness, among other tools, to convey its meaning.


Although different, art and science share some characteristics. Both use abstract models to understand the world. Both seek to create works with universal meaning. Both are creative: a sense of wonder opens up new possibilities for the imagination, new geographies for the creative process.


Situated in that liminal place between art and science, my work is a synthesis of the micro and the macro, the intuitive and the analytical. I hope to create work that accommodates feelings and intellectual ideas, work that will enrich one’s perspective of our natural world and renew one’s sense of our place in it.