The encaustic art of Sierra Barber

My name is Sierra Barber. I am an OCADU graduate, and a self-taught encaustic artist, currently based in Port Dover ON, Canada. I’ve been working with beeswax for nearly ten years. I began to experiment with the ancient technique of painting with wax after it had been described to me by a family member. When I first started, the process was completely new to me, I had never seen an encaustic painting before so this gave me the freedom to teach myself and grow into my own style. I eventually created my own understanding of encaustic painting that has evolved into my full artistic practice.My process begins with melting wax on a hotplate, where it is separated into different tins and mixed with oil paint to give it its colour. The application involves a build-up of thinly brushed layers of melted wax that create forms specific to how the material is applied at the time. The repetitive process gives me some control, but it allows the wax to grow and change, giving the appearance that it has occurred organically. I try to create work that looks like it has happened on its own with elements that look natural and unnatural, similar to our own reality.