Above - Kathleen Maltese, mixed-media on synthetic paper
As we come to the end of August, there is that familiar feeling in the air -- the one that reminds us that the summer went by way too quickly and those back-to-school-days are right around the corner. It is reassuring that despite all the disruption from the pandemic, our calendars, schedules, rituals, and rites of passage keep us moving ahead. As we continue to plod along in this strange pandemic fog, the anticipation of seasonal change keeps us on track and offers new possibilities for growth and discovery.
L - Joan Baer, mixed-media on wall covering | R- Sue Teller, ink & watercolor on paper
Over the summer, our wonderful community of adult artists spent time creating new and exciting works in our first ever series of Mixed-Media Art Camps. These camps were structured around themes relating to the natural world, sacred spaces, earth energies, and climate change. We worked on weekly projects that encouraged outdoor investigations, materials experimentation, and conceptual explorations. We worked collectively online on Tuesday nights, enjoying the company of friends from across the country, and continued with our one-on-one mentorship meetings online and in person.
L - Virginia Carstarphen, mixed-media on paper | R - Mary Ridley, watercolor & collage on paper
L - Jason McInnes, charcoal on paper | R - Mary Gomberg, ink & watercolor on paper
It is such a pleasure to watch the incredible growth of each of the artists that join our community. The dedication they bring to their creative work is especially noteworthy considering the social and emotional upheaval the pandemic has wrought. It tells an important story about the power of art and the way it works as an engine of transformation. The creative process is always ready to help us sort out and better understand our individual worlds and make meaning out of our relationship with this vast place called planet Earth.
Phyllis Rabineau, mixed-media with collage on paper
Chris Davidson, watercolor and ink on paper
I've thought a lot about the purpose, role, and relevance of art in a struggling world over the past few years. There are many reasons for making art and even more for wanting it to be a vital part of our collective histories. But like almost everything that is currently undergoing much needed reanalysis, a clarifying benefit of the shifting perspectives brought to light during these corona virus days, the story of art must also undergo a radical reckoning and bring us closer to the truth. And that is both exciting and terribly daunting as we look to the natural world for clues as to how to create something better. Through community we can find support and together envision new possibilities. I'm so grateful to have a community that is working thoughtfully toward that end.