Serious Fun

 

Ali Givens

For Serious Fun I’ve worked on refining several fabric collages that I began years ago. For some pieces, such as “Orange Peacock” I removed the strongest element, the peacock, from the original quilt and built an entirely new composition. In the new collage a cityscape becomes the backdrop as the the peacock stands in front searching among the rocks.  In another work, “Long Afternoon” I simplified the colors to create a completely new feeling. The original background was bright orange, but by replacing it with a more muted gray I was able to make all of the other colors come alive. I think sometimes you have to look at something a long time to figure it out–it’s like a puzzle. Fabric is wonderfully forgiving which makes it very fun as a medium–the more I work with it, the more I’ve learned to relax during the process. For this show I’ve also revisited my favorite theme: the still life.

Especially fun and challenging for me was incorporating my own interpretations of my fellow artists’ paintings and pottery as elements in my own collages. I have a beautiful vase by Garry Childs in my living room. It sits in the corner full of curly willow branches next to a very old stained glass window. Each morning when I sit on the sofa drinking my coffee, I stare at that corner–it became a still life in my mind. I first made a drawing of these elements, the vase, the window, the brick wall and the table. I then made a small collage with fabric to work out the details. Then, from that small collage, I was able to blow it up to a much larger size. This process works well for me. I love images that are small and intimate, and also images that are very large and bold. “Ode to Garry’s Vase” was challenging collage, but one that I truly enjoyed because of personal connection (Garry is also an artist at HGA). Being inspired by my friends is always fun, serious fun.

 

 

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Serious Fun

 Michele Yellin

When I first considered creating work for this exhibit along the theme of SERIOUS FUN, I thought, “Serious Fun? Easy! My Artwork has a lot of joy in it. I can do this, just work in my usual way. The serious part? Well, I work hard and take my painting practice seriously so, I’ve got this.” And began…

Wheresoever You Go, Go With All Your Heart

This painting Wheresoever you go, go with all your heart, has that saying by Confucius painted into the first layer of the underpainting. That has been my process for several years now, and I love it. It’s like meditating on a mantra, and often, the final image relates to what is written in the hidden layer. This was the first  painting I completed for the exhibit.

After I finished that painting, I was given a new tool that draws thin black lines. Then, I decided to add 5 new colors to my palette. I had not changed my palette in at least 6 years, so that was an interesting change for me. I could mix those into any number of new colors. Not long after that, I learned a new painting process and purchased 2 rubber painting blades to use with that new technique. Within the space of a couple of months, I had all these new things to work with.  I incorporated all these elements and that’s when everything changed for me. The infusion of all these new components took me to a place of real play.

7 Mile Bridge

I became unattached to the final image and much more immersed in the process of playing with color, tone and shape. What came out of this experience is a result of all those new elements, as well as a feeling in me that all I needed to  do was to keep working and playing, and trust the experience. And I will tell you something for nothing, creating paintings in this way, for me, has been serious fun. Seriously.

Serious Fun-Sugar Wants to Play

www.micheleyellin.com

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Serious Fun

Nell Chandler writes, “For our show I have created some of my narrative jewelry about relationships, spirituality and just life. I have also made some of my more abstract pieces that have a more tailored look. I always enjoy reaching back to my previous techniques and jewelry lines for inspiration, but this year feels different. I find the challenges of the world today burdening my heart.  As a reaction to this heaviness, I find myself in the studio making pieces that are more lighthearted and airy.”

Chandler continues,  This show  has also given me the opportunity to try something new. I have been thinking about trying a little torch firing and have been reading magazines and books and watching tutorials. I have dabbled a bit now and it feels perfect for our show we named Serious fun.

Painter and assemblage artist, Michele Yellin, often begins her work by placing a quote in the underpainting as way to start the process. Color is the language she uses with great boldness to say the things that cannot be expressed in words. As she layers the canvas with color she finds that figures and shapes begin to emerge. Much like a writer developing a cast of characters, she lets these shapes and figures tell her who they are. Michele moves from philosophical to playful with deftness and a strong sense of her own artistic voice.

Yellin writes, “For Serious Fun I have created vibrant paintings and wooden folk art using texture, layers of color, and line. With these elements, I am exploring the reality that is inside the reality we see.”

Fabric artist Ali Givens writes, “For Serious Fun  I have worked on refining several fabric collages that I began years ago. For some pieces, such as “Orange Peacock” I removed one element, the peacock, from the original quilt and built an entirely new composition. In another work, “Long Afternoon” I simplified the colors to create a completely new feeling. I’ve also revisted my favorite theme for other new work: the still life. Especially fun and challenging for me was incorporating my own interpretations of my fellow artists’ paintings and pottery as elements in my own collages. Being inspired by my friends is always the most fun, serious fun.”

Opening Reception

July 28

6-9

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Earthworks

 

Chris Graebner

My paintings fall into two general categories, botanicals and landscapes. My landscapes are drawn from my travels and are based on photos often taken out of a car window using a cell phone. Because I’m handicapped I don’t do a lot of walking, but you’d be surprised what a lot of wonderful things can be seen from the driver’s seat of an automobile! In fact, sometimes I just drive around Orange County back roads taking pictures of old barns and fields.

The paintings in this show were all done from photos taken between January 2016 and February 2017 in places as disparate as Florida, Iowa and Michigan. Three of the paintings, “At Anchor,” “Dock at the Pines” and “Deer on the Runway” are of an island in Lake Huron we’ve been going to each summer for the last few years. The Nebraska, Kansas and Iowa paintings were done from photos taken on the way back from a family wedding in South Dakota.

One of the fun things about cellphone photos is that they include GPS data allowing you to find the exact place they were taken. And, if you need more visual information from a different angle than you’ve captured in your photo you can often find it on Google street view. That doesn’t mean that my paintings are exact representations of what is in the photo, or even of what is actually in the location. I do a fair amount of editing – adding or deleting, moving things around, changing colors etc. – but you would certainly be able to match up the paintings with the photos that inspired them.

 

Earthworks

Connections

JUDE LOBE

This year for the show Earthworks I’m continuing to use the method of building and deconstructing in the medium of cold wax & oil. However, I’m concentrating on the ‘connectedness ‘ between earth, man, fauna, plants and everything else making up the universe, and the loss that may occur if we don’t become more mindful.

The idea of us not just being a part of nature, but connected in some way through a primal web of energy intrigues me and feels calming. It makes such sense to me. How else can one explain how we feel the same awe when watching a sunset, or feel anguish when we see someone in pain, or get teary-eyed at a wedding.

2nd try Jude's image

My paintings in cold wax & oil, encaustics and collage are a journey to articulate on a surface an emotion I have difficulty in articulating in words. Sometimes I’m on an archaeological excursion. From building up layers of colors and textures, to scraping away, scratching and uncovering what is beneath, leads me to new places I discover.

In this show I am also exploring working with rust on silk and combining it with copper which I fold and torch fire to bring out the colors.

 
I have been involved with art in one way or another throughout my life. Presently, I work in my studio built by my husband. The studio has easels, enameling kiln, pottery kiln, pottery wheel, slab roller, encaustic equipment, an assortment of paints and mediums, and many other items that inspire me to create.

CopperBowl&inside

EARTHworks

blog-header-earthworks

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Garry Childs describes his technique, “All of my work is formed on the potters wheel from terra-cotta clay. I apply glazes and pigments to my pots when they have reached a state potters call “leather-hard” which is when the clay has stiffened up enough to handle, but is not completely dry. I usually do this by spraying, but sometimes also with a brush. I then carve through the glaze into the still damp clay to achieve the various patterns seen on my work.”

Chris Graebner describes her inspiration for the show, “I love to drive, especially on long trips. Every summer we go to Northern Michigan – to Lake Huron. It’s a trip I love, two days up and two days back, driving through gorgeous scenery, forests and farms. (It’s amazing how many different types of barns there are!) Last summer, in addition to the trip to Michigan, we made a 3700 mile trip to South Dakota, returning home by way of Texas and Louisiana. As usual, I did most of the driving. Driving forces me to pay attention to everything around me and I’m always amazed by the beauty. Painting is my way of possessing that beauty so I want to paint it all!  My husband is patient about taking photos with the cell phone as we sail past interesting things on the highway. My paintings in this show are all of places observed from the car, in our travels over the last year.”

Jude Lobe’s work presented in Earthworks reflects her love and respect of nature. “For this show I’m still using the method of building and deconstructing, but concentrating on the connectedness between earth, man, fauna, plants and everything else making  up the universe, and the loss that may occur if we don’t become more mindful. I like mixing mediums and love textures, which becomes a metaphor for how all things in the universe are interwoven and intertwined. My paintings in cold wax & oil, encaustics and collage are a journey to articulate on a surface an emotion I have difficulty in articulating in words.”

“Sometimes I’m on an archaeological excursion. From building up layers of colors and textures, to scraping away, scratching and uncovering what is beneath, the process leads me to new places I discover.”

Opening Reception
May 26th, 2017, 6 – 9 pm

Parallel Play

Ellie Reinhold

Serendipity Brought Me Here…

Since my earliest days of art-making I’ve been attracted to, and my process and work driven by, serendipity.

In school the discovery of a yard full of snaky seed pods (catalpa, I learned) drove the creation of a series of 3D paintings which spilled piles of pods from their interiors. Later, a love for the texture of Spanish moss combined with a visual fascination with shredded tire debris along the interstate to yield a series of small (but big enough to enter) house installations lined, or covered, by one or the other.

The objects that populate my canvases and interact with my figures are dictated by serendipity as well. Planks of wood appear, triggered by visuals of boards piled at my house during construction (Cobble). Dilapidated houses and barns translate from the real world into surreal environments for figures (Fledge).

Serendipity even split the direction of my painting. I had been working figuratively for years when the beauty of a particularly awesome fall initiated a parallel body of landscape paintings.As with my figurative work, my landscape paintings have been prone to change and shift serendipitously.

My impulse to inject geometric shapes and pattern into my landscapes was driven by contemplating an exhibit theme, Uncharted. Admiration for the work of a colleague led to experiments with surface quality and changes in how I use my painting tools. Thus, my semi-realistic landscapes became abstracted landscapes, or abstract paintings with landscape elements.

In this show you can find semi-realistic landscapes, like View With Four Trees or Stepping Out. You can find landscapes that hearken to the emotional qualities of my figurative work, like Gesture. There are also several abstracted landscapes, such as Night and Day. Then there are four pieces that play with the forest as a unit, e.g. Forest Fortress, which are a little different from all of the above.

Though the show holds together well, and perhaps the differences are more subtle than I think, that’s quite a mix of approaches! I believe change may be afoot, and I’m wondering where serendipity will take me next…