This Artist Loves Making Complicated Patterns Beautiful

·2 min read
Photo Illustration by Luis G. Rendon/The Daily Beast/Courtesy of Rebecca Tulis
Photo Illustration by Luis G. Rendon/The Daily Beast/Courtesy of Rebecca Tulis

To master one’s particular vocation is one thing, but to flourish, as Rebecca Tulis has, both professionally and creatively, is quite another. Now the Van Der Plas Gallery on New York City’s Lower East Side is debuting “Rays of Light,” a group exhibition that will include some of Tulis’s multi-hued, abstracted checkerboard paintings.

It’s her first gallery show in the city, and the paintings Tulis produced for “Rays of Light” explode with color: hot pink, teal blue, burnt orange, black-green.

Is It Art—or Artificial Intelligence?

On the clock, Tulis, The Daily Beast’s Senior Product Designer, is responsible for many elements of the newsroom’s continued success: product design, mobile app functionality and The Daily Beast’s Crossword feature all fall within her purview. In addition to her extracurricular painting practice, Tulis also puts her design skills towards creating coffee mugs, face masks and iPhone cases and has a TikTok where she shares her painting process.

Within her artistic practice, Tulis prioritizes coming up with new color combinations and subtle differentiations between shades. At the beginning of the pandemic, her palette was almost solely black and white, but as the world began to heal, much more vibrant hues returned to her work.

Tulis sees a direct through line between herself and her grandfather, Carl Heimberger, an artist, architect and Holocaust survivor who also rewrote the New York City building code in 1969. “I like to think that I’m an architect of products,” Tulis said, and there’s also something clearly structural about the regulated geometric patterns that appear in her paintings.

“I’ll have a long day at work, but I can’t stop being creative,” Tulis said. “Even though my day job is creative, I have to continue being creative. It’s just so satisfying and I’m addicted to it. Some people end their day with a glass of wine or watching a good TV show, and I’ll end my day with painting.”

<div class="inline-image__credit">Collage courtesy of Rebecca Tulis</div>
Collage courtesy of Rebecca Tulis

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