Tia Factor’s paintings reference the aesthetic traditions of Romantic landscape painting, utilizing the syntax of idyllic and pastoral imagery. She combines that imagery with visual concepts derived from interviews with people living in neo-communal entities such as lifestyle, gated, and golf/leisure communities, most of which are situated in the wildland-urban interface. The combination of these two sets of images creates connotative complexity, referencing: Manifest Destiny; utopian ideals of wilderness and luxury, leisure, excess, and exclusivity; and the looming chaos of the climate crisis.
Her analogous color schemes of warm hues are reminiscent of deserts and sunsets. They create visual pleasure that is also tinged with the foreboding of a burning Western landscape. This is an emotionally complex space to which Factor adds another layer of complexity, blurring the boundaries between figuration and abstraction, representational space, and the physical gestures of painting itself.
Factor received her BFA from the California College of the Arts (CCA) and her MFA from the University of California at Berkeley. Her work has appeared in solo and group exhibitions from Oregon to Denmark, Chicago to Tasmania, and exhibited in such notable venues as the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (SF), Sonoma Valley Museum of Art, Berkeley Art Museum, Richmond Art Center (CA), Oliver Art Center (CCA, Oakland), Southern Exposure (SF), Pacific Northwest College of Art, Mary Elizabeth Dee Shaw Gallery (UT), Torrance Art Museum (CA), The Center for Contemporary Arts (Santa Fe), the Schneider Museum at Southern Oregon University in Ashland and the Jordan Schnitzer Museum (JSMA) at PSU. Factor has been featured in art magazines and on-line publications including Bear Deluxe, Stretcher, Artweek, New American Paintings, NAU NUA (Spain), The Semi-Finalist and art ltd. She was a RACC Professional Development Grant recipient and an artist in resident through Arts Tasmania and the Vermont Studio Center. She teaches at the Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA) and at the School of Art + Design (PSU), co-curates Erickson Gallery and is the program director of a yearly study abroad art course in Berlin. She lives and works in Portland, Oregon.