Transformation has long been one of the central driving forces in my life. I've always embraced change and new surroundings, as I’ve made my way from Dallas, TX (where I grew up) to southern and northern California to Boulder, Colorado and then to Portland, Oregon and Taos, New Mexico and (since 2019) Nashville, Tennessee, each place inspiring new ideas and unique avenues for dynamic personal growth and radical transformation in me.
Over a decade ago (in 2009) I changed careers, quitting Graphic Design to become a full time painter and artist while still living in Portland, Oregon. After first visiting Taos, New Mexico as a fellow of Wurlitzer Foundation (where I spent a semester as an artist-in-residence), I fell in love with the landscape and my work took on a looser, more expressive style, especially in the backgrounds of my subjects. A further exploring/shifting found me playing with the fluidity in form and paint between the abstract background and my foreground subject.
Early 2019 found me relocating to Nashville, TN - a transition which wasn't as easy as past ones, and yet fulfilling as my motivation was love for a man who has become my sweetheart and partner. Again, transformation followed. After a year of struggling to paint what in the past was my joy and obsession – faces, people and their stories – I find myself drawn to challenging myself in a way I've never been challenged before: painting purely abstract art that strives to communicate a depth of feeling in even more formally surprising, expressive ways.
As I explore and intuitively find my own way within the abstract language of form and color, I’m also finding a shift in my own identity – a deepening embrace of the unknown, a constant re-discovery and a break from my comfort zone into the unchartered territory shifting within and coming into being on the canvas through me. My intention is to take you, my viewers, with me on your own exploration – encountering powerful, uncharted depths within yourself as you engage the freshness of shape, color, and form in my new abstract work.
Anna Magruder is a recipient of a 2014 RACC grant for her "Oregon's Painted History" series and was honored with a 2015 Artist Residency at the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation in Taos. Her art appears in numerous publications and private collections.
Anna Magruder Art & Illustration -- specializing in portraits, whimsy and historic surrealism