I love working on several pieces at one time, it enables me to switch gears keeping my creative juices going. The abstracts usually have some sort of influences from nature incorporated, movement and cellular structures. I thoroughly enjoy getting lost in these and hope you do too!
To say that this commission is a true gift would be an understatement! The collectors, like so many other people I have worked with along the way, are absolutely wonderful! They don’t set any limitations on what I use in their art, only that it is from their many gardens on their property. Besides sending progress photos along the way, there is no pressure to meet a deadline, although I know that they can’t wait to see their art up in the designated spot in their home. The other two panels are pretty close to being done, I added the larger elements and will tweak everything once I see the three panels next to each other. Hidden deep within each panel are abstract details that will keep surprising them for years to come.
It is crazy how much detail lies within a Milkweed Pod!
One of my favorite parts are the delicate ‘Flyers’, whose fuzzy white puffs carry seeds which ultimately evolve into gorgeous flowers. The scent and colors of the bold Milkweed flowers attract butterflies and other pollinators like honeybees and hummingbirds.
I loved exploring the multiple layers spilling out of the pods. The complex structures both contain and release the secrets hidden deep inside.
There will be a total of ten different pieces of art in this series, all inspired by different elements in the collectors garden. In each case, the art is created on four separate Black Scratchbords® then hinged to create a 3D box that extends 4” from the wall. (The tops and back are blank because they aren’t seen.) All ten boxes will be hung next to each other forming a custom ‘sculptural’ work of art.
This has been a labor of love because I love the people that will soon have all three pieces hanging on their wall. And, love for being able to dive into all of the patterns and textures! After spending a lot of time photographing their beautiful gardens, I gave some thought to which elements might work well together. There was a lot to choose from, like the big puffs of overlapping shapes of the Allium to the deep color of their Japanese Maple. The second piece contains drawings of their ivy ground cover in the background, some of it with subtle colors, some towards the upper left just black outlines. I don’t sketch first preferring to dive right in drawing with my X-ACTO knife into layers of ink and clay and watch the art unfold. Movement is key with all of my work, how does the eye move across the page, is there energy that you can actually feel when you stand before my art? It helps to layer everything so it forms dimension and a rhythm to how one design ‘speaks’ to another. People ask me what artists inspire me and I always say, nature, natures’ art inspires me. The bold and delicate play of natures’ designs. I can’t wait to tackle the last of the three, each 32”x12”.
This series of photos shows the progression from top to bottom of the second piece in a Triptych. Each one is filled with elements from the collectors garden. I am experimenting with different techniques along the way. The fine lines in the background represent the ivy ground cover on their property. I drew the outlines of the leaves and brush, then painting with colored inks inside of the lines. The shine is due to the layer of clay under the ink. People ask me all of the time, how long does it take to create a piece? To give you some idea, just the top green section of the leaf above took me four days to complete.
Guggenheim Curator Ylinka Barotto selected my piece Across the Board 2 (21” h, 24”w, 3.5” deep) for the upcoming Brooklyn Waterfront Artist Coalitions WIDE OPEN 10. The opening is on Saturday, May 11th from 1pm-6pm. BWAC Gallery, 481 Van Brunt Street, Brooklyn, NY.
I am learning so much about about nature’s forms while working on a series of three pieces for some of my favorite collectors. Their gardens are designed by Chicago Botanic Gardens’ landscape architect, suffice it to say inspiration awaits at every turn! Each piece is created on a 12”x36” Black Scratchbord® custom made by Ampersand Art Supply. I paint with colored inks after drawing the lines with an X-ACTO blade.
Here is an example of how I work, in this case I am drawing Coleus leaves for another commission.
I am so excited to see how the three pieces work together. By not sketching first, I allow the spontaneous nature of my subject matter and technique to burst through.
It’s probably pretty clear by now that I thoroughly enjoy creating with Scratchbords® by Ampersand. They enable me to scratch out details with my X-ACTO that I simply cannot create with any other medium. While I am drawn to everything hiding within nature, I also love to explore how lines develop into abstract shapes, textures and patterns. Pushing the boundaries of this medium keeps things fresh, especially since I am so surprised with where each piece leads me and the you, the viewer.
When a collector contacted me to create several new pieces to reach across a section of their wall, it challenged me to come up with something unlike anything I’d created before. Knowing that the art was going to a bit higher up the wall, I got to wondering if I could push this medium to be 3 dimensional- easily viewed from every angle. The outcome is a series of boxes in varying sizes that protrude from the wall, each featuring a different element from their extensive gardens. They were gracious enough to let me wander their 7+ acres, gathering inspiration every step of the way. This is the first of ten, stay tuned!
Excited for my upcoming 2 person exhibition, MYSTIFIED, at Vivid Art Gallery on Friday, Oct. 5th, 5-8 pm
Thank you Tommy Reyes of Gallery 19 for inviting me to exhibit my art with these incredible artists.
Here is a sample of some of my art that will be on display from September 21- November 2, 2018.
Mary Ellen and I had met during a previous exhibition at Water Street Studios. She admired my art and we talked about my path and her new adventure serving people with medical challenges and incorporating art into their curriculum. I offered to help out when her dream comes to fruition.
Mary Ellen and her husband attended my current exhibition with Photographer, Dave Wensel, Inspired Response. They came up to me to say that they wanted to purchase, Moving On. I was really touched, this piece incorporates so many passages from my life and now it is going to be a part of theirs.
I know my fellow artists can attest to this fact, there is something so special about seeing your art go to someone you genuinely admire.
Thank you Water Street Studios for making it possible for us to meet.
I am so pleased to be a part of the 24th Evanston Evanston + Vicinity Biennial juried by Sergio Gomez, Curator and Director of Exhibitions at Zhou B Art Center, Chicago, Aron Packer, Owner and Director of Aron Packer Projects, Chicago and Therese Quinn, Associate Professor of Art History & Director of Museum and Exhibition Studies at the University of Illinois, Chicago.
It is one of the Midwest's largest juried exhibitions, drawing gallerists, curators, collectors and art lovers alike.
The opening reception if on Friday, August 31st from 6:00 - 8:00 pm and the exhibition runs from August 31st to September 30, 2018.
Across The Board has been been running around inside of my head for some time...I finally made it happen. One of the key aspects about my art is the amount of movement I can develop through line. I began this piece by deciding that it would be a total of eight feet wide. (This is the first of two sections, the other one is still in the works.)
My goal is to create an intimate conversation with the viewer so I try not to work too large. I designed this hanging 'sculpture' to glide in and out from the wall. It reaches 21" high by 96" wide, allowing the viewer to take their time as they engage with each individual piece. The content is filled with images from nature along with abstract shapes. Each panel was created by drawing with an X-ACTO knife into boards made of India Ink and clay. The magic happens when I drag my knife through the layers, slowly but surely patterns begin to emerge. Values are achieved by varying the pressure with my tool, and textures by painting with acrylic artist color. I hope that you see something new in Across The Board every time you view it.
Thank you Bruce Starrenburg Photography, www.bstarrenburg.com, for doing a beautiful job of capturing my art. And thank you, Gemini Builds It, www.geminibuildsit.com, for your constant attention to building the structure that supports Across The Board.
I had decided not to sell this piece because I was rather in love with it. But gallery owner Cynthia Burr of Vivid Art Gallery in Winnetka, IL said that a collector had been thinking about Larger Than Life Orchid for over a year and would love to purchase it.
It is now hanging in the perfect spot in their home.
I am so pleased to be selected by juror, Gallerist Aron Packer, for the upcoming Rockford Midwestern Biennial 2018.
Is Spontaneous Combustion Real? captures both natural and abstract elements as they wind their way across the page. Etching with an X-ACTO knife into boards covered in clay and India ink, I never know how my art is going to evolve until the end. How do I know when it is done? If there is enough push and pull between the lines, if there is a place to draw in someone's eye and then another that allows the eye to breathe, if all of the elements talk to each other; then I am done. Editing, knowing when not to add something, is equally as important developing the lines. Subtle textures are created by painting with black inks and paints at the end of the process. (Size: 16.5" x 19.5")
Looking forward to having my art at Rockford Art Museum from June 8th to September 30th, 2018.
I am on my way to creating a large installation piece, 21" high by 96" wide that hangs from the wall and forms an accordion like shape. The idea is to continue the idea of movement that exists within each piece and have the viewer experience it on another level as it undulates across the gallery. Here are a few more pieces that will be part of the installation.
I had no idea that I'd received a Special Recognition Award for my piece, Uprooted 2,through the Brooklyn Waterfront Artists Coalition BLACK & WHITE show. But there it was, just waiting for me along with a check in my mailbox. Thank you Alison Hokanson, Assistant Curator, Metropolitan Museum of Art! I am truly honored!
October 27th - 29th at Fulton Street Collective Gallery, 1821 West Hubbard, Chicago, IL 60622
My art is one of many pieces that are going to be on display at Fulton Street Collective Gallery from October 27th - 29th. I thought I would give you the info on how you can purchase this piece or any of the others online.
Online sales are available from October 20th through October 26th along with October 30th through November 3rd. Other terms and conditions apply. Please visit the Art In Common Cause website for more details, ArtInCommonCause.org