Patrick Chamberlain (b. 1955, USA) employs a mixture of philosophy and formalism in his work. His visual language includes references to geometric and lyrical abstraction, as well as figurative and conceptual elements. Fluidly shifting between numerous styles and techniques, Chamberlain’s diverse oeuvre can appear chaotic when seen at disparate points. Shown collectively, his complex practice harmonizes. Marks and materials echo across surfaces with drastically different compositions, some pieces pure and others showing signs of infection as the styles corrupt each other.
Text is a frequent element in Chamberlain's paintings. It is difficult to assign a singular purpose or meaning to his use of the written word, except to say that the words in his paintings are never all they seem to be. In some instances, he is responding to actual lists in his environment, using them as starting points for aesthetic compositions. Other times, words are purely formal devices: aesthetic elements like color, line, form and texture. Words also represent a reminder that is always evident in Chamberlain's work, that painting is itself a language, and when an artist is fluid in it, they can adapt it to create a type of visual poetry.