The Finch Lane Pop-Up Shops at Finch Lane Gallery are well underway. Twelve artists and craftspeople have been selected to hold individual pop-up shops featuring art and crafts for sale. A variety of media is represented in this line-up of artists.

We are so thrilled to have Caro Nilsson with us for the Pop-Up Shops! Be sure to join us for Caro’s Pop-Up shop on Wednesday, December 8th from 4-8pm.

Caro Nilsson is a multi-media artist focused primarily on tactile impressionistic painting. The practice of making art is a way of interpreting experiences – the way it felt to move through a space with feet and hands, to feel sunlight, smell pine needles. Caro holds a B.S. in Architecture and a B.A. in Fine Art from the University of Virginia. She has spent her adult years exploring America’s wild places, and translating those feelings and findings into paintings. She completed her first solo Artist Residency at the Dacha in Mystic, CT in the Spring of 2021, and currently lives and paints full time from Salt Lake City.

We recently chatted with Caro about her Pop-Up Shop:

Tell us about the work you’ll be bringing to your pop-up shop. What people will see and the process and/or concepts being these pieces?

The original works I’ll be bringing are landscapes informed by a couple of concepts I’ve been exploring over the past year. One of those concepts is about ‘learning how to hope’- Hope is a word that is used pretty regularly, without much thought. Turns out that the actual act of ‘hoping’ is terrifying, it is full of brambles and uncertainty and fear. In the landscapes about hope, I am exploring what it feels like to learn. Feels sometimes like wandering through the desert towards a place that looks like home, a beautiful mountain, an oasis. Maybe you’ll get there after tons of effort and bask in that faraway beauty, maybe it will all have been a mirage.

I’ll also be bringing a series of ‘canyon poems’, paintings about the poetry of the deep red rock walls and the gentle meander of water at the bottom. We see the walls as foreboding, jagged, strong, unyielding, and the water as a relief at the bottom, the opposite of the harsh surrounds. We forget that the trickle down there carved the depths, made them sharp and shadowed and reaching towards the sky – all of it simply by continuing.

Your ‘tactile impressionist’ paintings combine what is usually seen as traditional art with what is usually seen as craft – landscape painting with embroidery. Please tell us what drew you to this process and what you see it accomplishing.

This process has been one that is ever-evolving. I tend to proceed quickly through paintings, getting down the gestures and the feelings faster than it would take for me to process what I was after. The threads help to ground me in the experience of the work itself, they help me to slow down, to wander around inside of it for a while. For every stitch I am able to remind myself to be present, I am responding to what is beneath, I am watching the colors of the threads talk to the colors of the paint. I find this dialogue super interesting, the conversation between colors that come from different materials. To me, the threads bring the painting into the world of the material -right here, right in front of you. Not only are they invoking some place from my memory or imagination, they are a place that my fingers and hands actively created, they are many places at once.

As I understand it, you’ll also be offering digital watercolors. Please tell us about this process, and how you decide whether a painting will be with traditional paints or digital paints.

Digital painting is a new medium for me this year, and it is full of experiments and discovery at the present moment! The paintings I will be offering have been a part of that process of learning, of discovering the boundaries of the medium and what can be achieved digitally that cannot be achieved with traditional paints. These paintings, in my mind, become even more about what I can achieve with colors and how they talk to one another, different qualities of light, opacities and blending. Digital paints are loose and have a lower barrier to entry than a normal painting setup (no priming, no clean-up, no dropcloth!) and finding something that I am super new at helps me not to take myself or my process so seriously.

Interested in the other Finch Lane Gallery Pop-Up Shops? These artisan Pop-Up Shops will occur Tuesdays through Saturdays, December 4 – 21, weekdays from 4:00-8:00 p.m., and Saturdays from 11:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m., at 54 Finch Lane, Salt Lake City, UT. For more information, click here.