Ash Ferlito is a curious observer with a lust for life. Synthesizing her thoughts and feelings with imagery is a way to slow the spinning of wheels and delivering reflections on the weird, wonderful, horrible world by which Ferlito is both crushingly confused and eternally charmed. Ferlito’s work is underpinned by personal, yet open narratives that pull from a wide variety of sources: music, literature, craft traditions and nature.
Ferlito's practice crosses the boundaries between traditional categories of painting, printmaking, photography and sculpture. Expanding on the concept of en plein air, Ferlito concentrates her work out of doors, interacting directly with elements of the natural world and focusing on biodiversity. She believes art is one of the most potent spaces to convey information and aims to create work that sparks curiosity and deepens conversations about place, identity, connection and conservation.
In a series of cyanotype prints, Ferlito is inspired by the activity of ‘mothing’ or attracting moths with light for observation. Using UV light, she lures insects to land on a gridded sheet. Working overnight until dawn, Ferlito photographs the moths highlighting fluctuations in weather, location and lunar phase. Staying faithful to the insect’s composition, she then combines the photos to create a transparency negative. The final artwork serves as a portrait of local biodiversity, a constellation of activity suspended in the field.
Ferlito’s wildscapes turn plant materials into mark-making tools and brushes. After collecting and identifying, the materials are pressed and flicked onto wet muslin after dipping in a combination of natural dyes Ferlito makes, acrylic paint and ink. The finished paintings reflect the exuberance of the plants, flowers and life that Ferlito encounters. The opaque quality of the muslin captures light and hints at the internal stretcher bar structure, creating a counterpoint to the lyrical compositions.
Cartoons stain painted in reverse reveal gestural images exploring the emotional complexity of love,
life, worth, power and control. Other paintings offer tiny rendered subjects centrally grounded in a dark
grey space emitting a psychic power beyond their size.