Switching out paint-brushes and palette knives for latex gloves, Iris Scott has garnered worldwide acclaim for spearheading the Instinctualist movement. By drawing on primal instincts from which conceptual art has broken, she forged an intimate, highly tactile bond with her medium and developed an innovative approach to finger-painting, elevating the artform from mere “child’s play” into a formidable creative discipline.
Dramatic changes in the landscape over the course of geological time inspire Iris Scott to explore the cool beauty of her surroundings. In late 2019, Iris leapt out of a hyper-urban environment, resettling in rural New Mexico to build a studio and home. Situated among the canyons and caves of the desert, exposed to the sedimentation of millions of years, isolated from the bustle of life in the city, the artist is issuing a call for conservation through her reverential treatment of the natural. Scott’s insistence on the subject matter is a rebellion against the high levels of abstraction and conceptualization long favored by staid institutions of contemporary art. The move to New Mexico has allowed her to focus and defined her project. Studying the landscape and patterns of the canyons, encountering living things as they traverse the land, following her childlike sense of awe, these practices allow the technique of finger painting to articulate our need to connect with the sacred in nature. Scott is prepared to share her sense of wonder with audiences and kindle within them, through their experience of art, the same love and kinship with nature that she feels