Though born in Detroit, Louise Preston found her natural home in California while in the middle of art school at the University of Michigan. She didn’t go back.
Instead, she plunged into her new life, among other things, beginning her 30 years of studies and retreats into meditation and the nature of consciousness. She considers herself self-taught, even though Tom White of Oakland was her mentor for three years and she studied with master calligrapher Kaz Tanahashi, now a main influence.
Other influences range from her training in the martial art of aikido and her love of the vivid, colorful consciousness of Tibetan thanka paintings.
Preston’s self-assembled education has given her what she feels is a nonlinear, unconventional version of an MFA. The primary “purpose” she feels in painting is to capture “a unity, an awakeness.”
She adds that to her “painting is not about something else.” It is its own experience of color and movement, a spontaneous unity of artist, paint, and canvas.
Her sensibility is embodied in the process she uses, and the process is embodied in the painting itself. In other words, her goal is to break down or ignore any boundaries between herself, her vision, and the mechanisms of painting.
Her body of work speaks boldly in its own language of her experiences, of her perceptions, of her life, of art.