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Turning Her Geo-Scars Into Art

Some wear their geo-stripes – the wounds and scratches suffered on the trail – with pride; others don thick gloves and layers of protective clothing in a bid to avoid them.

American artist Anne Allen has gone a step further, though, creating a series of paintings based on her geocaching injuries.

The Fort Worth, Texas resident has long been interested in patterns, both natural and manmade, but says she began exploring the “random patterning found in nature and on the body” only recently.

Her subsequent artworks include ink drawings “based on the tangled lines of vines” and a series of intimate, red watercolours depicting “the network of criss-crossing scratches on the skin incurred during hikes in rugged country while geocaching”.

Each 9 x 12-inch Bloody Scratch Drawing is titled according to its GC code and the co-ordinates where her wounds were sustained – such as GC18490: The Cube (N32° 46.998 W096° 55.721). Allen says the goal here is to abstract “the source material to reveal patterns and intricacies”.

Reviewer Steve Bennett, of the San Antonio Express-News, describes her efforts as “small, exquisite networks”. “Like a scab you can’t stop picking, they draw you in with their invocations of pain.”

Allen’s series is currently on show at San Antonio’s Southwest School of Art until April 29th as part of its Texas Draws II exhibition. You can view more of her Bloody Scratch Drawings online at Cris Worley Fine Arts, where each artwork is being sold for US$650 (NZ$788).

*Would you buy one of Anne Allen’s geo-paintings? Or do you have any geo-scars to rival her injuries? Tell us below …

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