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An Explorative Eye: Art by Mark M. Garrett

A painting of a tree branches overlapping and intersectingSolitude (diptych), ink wash on canvas

Mark M. Garrett is a San Francisco-based artist who employs abstraction and an explorative eye across various media. The artist often combines collage and painted media, such as in his map paintings where cut-out sections are filled in with paint. This paint-and-papercut combination informs both the media and the aesthetics of much of Mark’s portfolio. 

An artwork made up of textured paper pulp in a frameUntitled

Browsing through Mark’s portfolio, I find that branches tend to be a common theme running through many of the artist’s pieces. Whether it’s long strips of paper cut out from maps, or lines of paint and pigment intersecting like lightning bolts across a substrate, the artist seems to have an affinity for this style of abstract line art. Even in Mark’s assemblages, intersecting and crossing lines can be seen. 

A screen capture of Mark M. Garrett's art portfolio


I really like the way the artist’s love for maps and topology comes into play in the series Planet Skins, Flight Dreams, and Topographical Reliquaries. These works use discarded paper and other materials to build up topographies of their own, in self-contained masses of “land”.

A sculpture made from found materials and collaged elementsEmpathyBlues, mixed media, found frame, paper cut collage, mirror, ink

About the author

Dallas Jeffs Art Writer

Dallas Jeffs is the Editor of Artist Run Website's blog. They hold a degree in Critical and Cultural Practices from Emily Carr University of Art and Design, as well as a certificate in Technical Writing from BCIT. Dallas has a passion for speaking and writing about art, and sharing that interest with others. In their studio practice they are an illustrator and budding tattoo artist, but they consider themselves a writer foremost. If you like art, books and culture with a science fiction twist, check out Dallas' personal blog, HappySpaceNoises or their art on Instagram.

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