Whitney Wood


The two paintings I've submitted for the show..... there is a lot to them. These two pieces center around my own personal struggles with suicide/depression and trauma of loss and mental illness. One is titled "Connecting the Disconnected". This piece was with me for 6 years, continuously being reworked. It centers around trying to reconnect back to oneself after trauma. The other painting is more blunt. Its title is "Not Today", however, the actual title is "Fuck you, I'm not killing myself today", I decided to simplify it since we are in Utah. This painting is centered around the internal battle with depression, where one part wants to leave but the other part doesn't- thus one set of arms sliced off her head while the other stitch it back on. It references some religious icons as well- virgin Mary (Madonna) and Shiva. Essentially the painting is about how to learn love life in spite of the despair and depression.


Whitney Wood was born in Salt Lake but grew up primarily in the desert of Southern Utah, spending her days playing in rivers, catching lizards and exploring the desert cliffs. Whitney learned to oil paint when she was 10 years old thanks to her grandma deciding to coordinate some lessons. Thank you, grandma. 

For Whitney, art is the way to bridge the gap between the real world and the ethereal one where our emotions reign open and supreme. Whitney's art is something like a Rorschach test, a canvas of monsters reflecting our own inner demons, and angels.

Whitney primarily paints with oils on wood panel. She pulls inspiration from animals, creatures, nature, and the human condition. She layers her paint, fixating on textures, details and creating a type of luminosity with the oil pigments. Whitney loves to contrast the darkness of the subjects with a soft gentleness, reassuring the monsters there is serenity. “I want to recreate the beauty I see in the world. Beauty is something that wakes people up from the drudgery of life, it makes us feel alive. I paint to help others feel alive and not alone.” 

Her art is many things for many people. Melancholy, or ecstatic, sublime, or sarcastic, it seems to share the same primal fears and desires that you or I might. No matter the medium, you'll find her art channels something through you.

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