Crystala Armagost’s images start with the subjects frequent to her work - the histories of both her rural upbringing and Pittsburgh’s industrial past. Her pieces begin with visits to industrial ruins, little blue-collar towns, and monuments, where original photos are taken and remnants are collected. Her imagery then combines object, relic, consumer, phantasm and their collective reflection of the visited space. The complete body of work in her Industrial Series serves as a study of steel mills and other industrial sites as obsolete objects. In the artist’s words,
“These massive structures have physically changed the landscapes and horizon lines and are still standing somewhere amid the process of their own decay. Many of the people who live near them never knew the look of the grounds without them, but are not necessarily connected enough to their history to understand what the parts of them are, how they worked, or why any of their remaining contents have relevance. They may contain personal histories full of powerful emotions for older individuals, but somewhere there's a dividing line, where a younger generation only sees a useless, empty object.
Her work utilizes a vast array of media including photographs, collage, found object, melting wax, iron, steel, patinas, papers, fabrics, and items collected from long walks and urban spelunking. The works that evolve from Armagost’s process range from limited edition serigraphs to long and complex variable editions and deeply layered encaustic paintings.