When I was a young woman I attended a massive art show outside Madrid representing galleries from all over the world. It was held in enormous domes and it took days to visit all the stalls, with buses transporting attendees. At the end of my visit I had seen three pieces of art that really moved me and to my astonishment they were all abstract and very simply marked.

It has taken me 30 years to trust that response and the ability of color and shape to communicate in ways more immediate and intimate than can be intellectually understood or traced. Slowly my work has become increasingly abstract, and even now as I work on my earth series, I aim for a visceral response first, just this side of thinking.

My current work focuses on earth, water, air, fire, and biotic life. We belong to the Earth. We are of the Earth and our sensibilities resonate with the patterns and expressions of organic life. My most audacious aspiration is that my artwork would affirm this relationship, becoming a portal to our connection to nature, existence, our understanding of natural systems, our sense of belonging and unity, and even our understanding of right action.

I was born and raised in Aspen, Colorado and graduated from the University of California at Berkeley in Cultural Anthropology. I’ve lived in Boulder since 1990, where Tyler Norris and I raised our children, Eliza Verena and Emmet Daler.

—Juliana Forbes










Photo by Reina Katzenberger

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