Carissa Diaz was born in California and received her BFA from San Francisco State University. Diaz has tailored her professional career to support art spaces that collaborate and foster fine artists, including Bay Area visual arts non-profit Root Division. She lives and works in San Francisco.
My painting process is a never ending loop of spray painting overlapping lines, shapes, and peeling back tape to reveal bits of information about each planar landscape. My color inspiration comes from the neon signs of San Francisco's storefronts, a meticulous attention to light, and the softness and vibrancy of the California landscape. I use acrylic paint in gestural forms to create contrast with hard edged lines, repeating patterns, and melting fluorescent gradients. Working as an art preparator has allowed me to learn about an entirely new world of materials, and I have found it is influencing my work whether I like it or not. Recently, I have been experimenting with spraying or painting through mesh door screens and other common materials found at hardware stores. I am deeply influenced by the physicality of materials, as well as work such as the saturated and electric paintings made by Richard Mayhew, Alma Thomas, and the classic flatness and blocky collage compositions by Matisse. My intentions are to give viewers the same kind of satisfaction and joy that I get when I create something. If a person looks or feels even slightly happier after seeing my work, the painting is successful.