During my residency in Chicago, I had several discussions with my advisor Molly Zuckerman-Hartung. She was awesome and gave me so much inspiration and guidance. During one of my individual studio visits with her, I was talking about my obsession with the color pink, especially bubblegum or Pepto Bismol pink and she said, “Why don’t you paint with Pepto Bismol?” She then went on to suggest that I paint with a variety of medicines just to see what happens.
The next day I think, I went to Walgreens and picked up some of the cheapest medicine I could find. I got the Walgreen’s version of Pepto Bismol, aspirin, sugar free cough drops, ibuprofen, cold medicine, glucose tablets, and glucose liquid, plus some extra things like alcohol swabs and socks for diabetics.
I made a couple pieces with the medicine. My favorite is the first piece that I made. I took a piece of unprimed canvas and pinned it to the wall so that it would lay horizontally with assistance from a chair. I proceeded to squirt, splatter, and drip the pepto, cold medicine, and some liquid watercolor onto the canvas. The liquids sat on the surface of the canvas for days before finally getting absorbed into the fabric and drying. It was pretty interesting to see how it changed each time I went in my studio.
I also experimented with imprinted surfaces. I put a layer of spackle on two small boards and pushed ibuprofen, cough drops, and some bottle caps into it. I also squirted cold medicine onto the surface as it dried. I ended up painting on top of everything once it was dry.
Here are a few more pieces where I mixed paint and liquid medicine: