Artist Sarah A. Smith creates lively, nature-inspired compositions that glimmer with a touch of gold. Her Gold Drawings consist of metal leaf, corrosive, ink, and pencil blended together on paper to produce scenes oozing with texture and realistic details.
In her large-scale works, Smith explores how our human desire for material goods is slowly affecting the environment. To create each piece, she brushes copper sulfate across the surface of the metal leaf which creates an acidic reaction. The images are a result of the chemical process that tarnishes and corrodes the metal along the surface of the paper.
Smith is able to recreate a reaction that normally takes hundreds of years in a natural environment. By manipulating elements in her work, she demonstrates the harmful effects that human interventions can have on nature. “The oxidation illustrates pollution, disintegration, transformation of elements, changes, and the passage of time,” says the artist.