Saltarrelli’s works on paper are dynamic narratives that utilize religious, tribal and personal symbologies to relay abstracted contexts in life.
Saltarrelli’s process begins with the alteration of the paper ground. Often working outside, exposed to natural elements, the paper is stained and left to dry to leave a patina of undetermined age. The more broken down the better, as many works exhibit tears and holes and the artist’s footprints, as he steps among the worked pages. Often the paper retains the indentations and colors of the surface the paper is laid upon. These natural elements play a part in the direction in which Saltarrelli will apply color and line. Intuition acts as a response to what is considered a partnership, a conversation with nature where Saltarrelli less acts as master, and more a guiding participant in process.
Saltarrelli’s symbols and marks derive from spirituality, a philosophy of the transcendence of the spirit through death. In a sense, many paintings are portraits of admired people who have passed. These symbols, such as the Hopi Kachina, skulls and religious icons, as well as personal references in text and glyph have been broken down, reduced to elements that call to the spirits journey.