Abstraction & Realism
Transcend Each Other!

From the age of five I have been interested in the real and imaginary facets of art; always exploring a variety of mediums. I discovered that alternating between realism and abstraction afforded me a new energy application and directional spirit.

Most of my early training and involvement centered in Pennsylvania's Rust Belt, giving an industrial flavor to my large mural abstractions purchased for the offices and boardrooms of the area's steel and aluminum corporations.

Many of these works were architectural in nature or appeared to be geometric interstices derived and compounded from multiple reverse etching procedures.

In the mid 1990's we moved from Pennsylvania to Florida, giving me a deep appreciation for the tropical southern exposure of the United States. I especially became enamored with Florida's year-round abundance of rich and varied plants, particularly the Banana (Musa) I studied and photographed in the backyard of our former Naples home.

Reveling in the Musa's multitudinous leaf patterns, I often shot several rolls of film using the prints as future painting prototypes.   Presently I am filming many images in one frame - automatically producing compounded/fractured imagery which I employ in future mixed-media imagery on paper or canvas, I believe   in the harmonious coexistence of abstraction and realism thereby enhancing and enriching each other. My work embodies realism in abstraction and abstraction in realism - transcending and encompassing these doctrines.

Joan Brechin Sonnenberg


All images contained within are copyright Joan Brechin Sonnenberg