This Artsy Life. Finding Ourselves in Yosemite

With worries over the health of my mom, close friends, and myself ( I checked out fine, whew! ), it’s been an emotional summer.  Not really the carefree season of years gone by.  So Mr. F and I were really looking forward to unplugging and spending a week camping and hiking in Yosemite National Park.  An escape to staggering beauty could not have come at a better time.

This Artsy Life: Finding Ourselves in Yosemite #travel #outdoors #yosemitenationalpark This Artsy Life: Finding Ourselves in Yosemite #travel #outdoors #yosemitenationalpark

Simply taking time away from work, social media, and just the stress of every day life will have a renewing effect, but to be surrounded by an incomparable natural landscape, incredible in its beauty and yet struggling for its own survival, definitely puts everything into a new perspective.

This Artsy Life: Finding Ourselves in Yosemite #travel #outdoors #yosemitenationalpark This Artsy Life: Finding Ourselves in Yosemite #travel #outdoors #yosemitenationalpark

These getaways allow for a resting of the mind and soul and an opportunity for Mr. F and I to really reflect individually and as a partnership on where we are and where we would like to be.  Clarity comes, decision making is easier without distraction and passion for beloved pursuits are reawakened and reinforced.  Every morning in Yosemite, we were awake with the dawn ( and sometimes before! ) excited for the adventure and inspiration the day would bring.  Why can’t we rise to great each day as if there is adventure and discovery waiting?

This Artsy Life: Finding Ourselves in Yosemite #travel #outdoors #yosemitenationalpark

This Artsy Life: Finding Ourselves in Yosemite #travel #outdoors #yosemitenationalpark

We would lay our heads down each night and look up at the stars, exhausted yet satisfied that we’d taken full advantage of the day we’d been given.

This Artsy Life: Finding Ourselves in Yosemite #travel #outdoors #yosemitenationalpark

By the end of our trip, we’d made goals for changes we’d like to see in our lives, a backing off from invasive technology and a renewed focus on physical, mental, and spiritual health.  I personally came away incredibly inspired to dive deeper into painting and can’t wait to work through the amazing amount of artistic stimulation that I’ve felt since stepping foot onto Yosemite’s sacred ground.

All images by Artsy Forager.

What the Water Gave: Jessica Pisano

While Mr. F and I are camping in Yosemite, I’m resharing some posts you might have missed the first go ’round!  Enjoy!

If there is one thing we learned during our time in the desert, it is that Mr. Forager & I are water people.  We need to see it, smell it, hear it.  Whatever form it make take, whether the ocean, the Puget Sound, a lake, or river, something about it is essential to us.  In her work, Rhode Island artist Jessica Pisano invites us into the sense of stillness and timelessness the water gives us.

Watermark by Jessica Pisano

Watermark, oil and silver leaf on panel, 60×48

In water, there is such a delicate balance.  It’s presence, when contained, calms us, but when loosed, it can be an incredibly destructive force.  It is essential for growth and life, yet slowly erodes what is in its path.

Fog Ascending by Jessica Pisano

Fog Ascending, mixed media on panel, 36×36

Fog on the Horizon No. 6 by Jessica Pisano

Fog on the Horizon No. 6, oil and silver leaf on panel, 40×30

Sea Legs by Jessica Pisano

Sea Legs, oil and silver leaf on panel, 36×36

Pisano works her water series in translucent layers, creating a depth that reminds us of how the waters overflow and overtake.

Still Waters by Jessica Pisano

Still Waters, oil and silver leaf on panel, 40×40

If you’d like to see more of Jessica Pisano’s work, please visit her website.  You can see her work in person at a number of galleries in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, as well as Stellers Gallery in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL.

All images are via the artist’s website.

 

 

Bathing in Beauty: Nina Nolte

While Mr. F and I are camping in Yosemite, I’m resharing some posts you might have missed the first go ’round!  Enjoy!

Although I love the cold winter months, for many, January is a tough month to swallow.  All the gaiety of the holidays now in the past, it seems such a long time before the warmth of spring and the ease of summer.  So on what may be for many of you a cold, dreary Monday, I thought a little sunshine and warmth from German artist Nina Nolte may put a little spring back in your socked & booted step!

Nina Nolte | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings

Forgotten Dreams, acrylic on canvas, 100x16x4 cm

Nolte’s depictions of stylish ladies lounging by the pool recalls, to me, a modern-day version of traditional European works depicting the wealthy socializing and at play, such as Fragonard or Boucher.  The richness of the color ( that yellow! )and details in the folds of fabric bring to mind the sumptuousness of the textiles of Vermeer.

Nina Nolte | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings

The Days of Wine and Roses, acrylic on canvas, 100x200x4 cm

The works do hearken back in some ways to European traditions, but it is done in such an enchantingly modern, yet elegantly timeless way.

Nina Nolte | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings

Some of Those Days, acrylic on canvas, 100x160x4 cm

The viewer is given the position of voyeur, thanks especially to the bird’s eye view angle of many of the pieces.  It feels a bit like we’re eavesdropping on some really juicy society gossip!

Nina Nolte | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings

You Must Believe in Spring, acrylic on canvas, 65x65x4

Nina Nolte | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings

As Time Goes By, acrylic on canvas, 100x160x4 cm

To bask in more of Nolte’s bathing beauties, please visit her website.  Think of these while you’re sloshing through freezing rain and snow!

Featured image is How Deep is the Ocean?, acrylic on canvas, 1oox200x4 cm.  All images are via the artist’s website.

Lush Layers: Karen Silve

While Mr. F and I are camping in Yosemite, I’m resharing some posts you might have missed the first go ’round!  Enjoy!

Our memories of places and experiences are not simply visual recollections of what we saw, but a culmination of all that our senses absorbed at the time.  The sounds, the smells, our impressions of and reactions to our surroundings.  It is in this intuitive way that Portland artist Karen Silve translates her own memorable moments into abstractions of rich layers, swirls and drips of paint.

Karen Silve | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings

Market VI, acrylic on canvas, 50×60

Open air markets are cacophonies of stimulation– full of mounds of colorful produce, people talking, laughing, fragrances of coffee, freshly baked pastries and other yummies– all swirl around us.  ( Can’t wait for the market here to open for Spring! ) Silve captures the friendly frenzy in her Market Series. ( above & below )

Karen Silve | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings

Market IX, acrylic on canvas, 42×46

For her Sacred Places series, she explores the impact of a different kind of stimulation, those stolen moments found when we are surrounded by the quiet of nature.  Being in Portland, Silve has access to some of the most spectacular natural spaces in the world ( can you tell I love Oregon?! ).  A favorite of hers, and mine, is the Columbia River Gorge, whose lush and quiet beauty she captures in paint.

Karen Silve | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings

Sacred Veil II, acrylic on canvas, 58×68

Through our travels, many times I find myself feeling like I’m a bit more attuned to my location and experiences.  Perhaps because we are experiencing new places so often, that each one seems enchanting and special in its own way.  But there are also times when we fall into the repetition and monotony of every day life and forget that each place and day is unique.  Karen Silve’s intuitive expressions of her experiences are reminding me to be fully in each moment, immersing myself into making of a memory.

Karen Silve | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings

Market VII, acrylic on canvas, 50×60

Karen Silve | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings

Morning Glow, acrylic on canvas, 48×48

To see more of Karen Silve’s work, please visit her website.  In Portland, her work can be seen at Portland Fine Art, but check out her website for representing galleries in New York, Washington, DC, Chicago, California and the UK. Featured image is Yellow Rapture, acrylic on canvas, 96×48.  All images are via the artist’s website.

Life Blurred: Monica Tap

While Mr. F and I are camping in Yosemite, I’m resharing some posts you might have missed the first go ’round!  Enjoy!

Just the other day, I was saying to Mr. Forager, “Can you believe it’s been almost two years since..”  We seem to say that to each other a lot these days.  Time just moves really quickly, especially when you’re looking back.  In her work, Toronto artist Monica Tap  investigates the line between movement and perception, resulting in dazzling abstracted landscapes.

Six Ways from Sunday: Tuesday by Monica Tap

Six Ways from Sunday: Tuesday, oil on canvas, 100×60

Tap bases her work on Quicktime videos of the streaming landscape as seen from the windows of cars, buses, and trains.  Reproducing that magical effect of obscured color and light we so enjoyed as kids.. staring out the window as the world passed us by.

Six Ways from Sunday: Wednesday by Monica Tap

Six Ways from Sunday, oil on canvas, 100×60

Six Ways from Sunday: Thursday by Monica Tap

Six Ways from Sunday: Thursday, oil on canvas, 100×60

During those long car or train rides, we couldn’t wait to get where we were going, so often we enjoyed just letting the blur go by.  But as adults, I wish I could just stop the blur sometimes and enjoy it for the wonderful time it is.

Six Ways from Sunday by Monica Tap

Six Ways from Sunday: Friday, oil on canvas, 100×60

Is life moving too fast for you these days?  Or maybe, like me, you’re impatiently waiting for a change and things don’t seem to be moving fast enough?!  Want to see more of Monica Tap’s intriguing landscapes?  Visit her website here.

All images via the artist’s website.

September Featured Artist. Brenda Hope Zappitell

Kickin’ off a new month with a holiday ( for most of us ) and a new Featured Artist, you say?  Well, I’ll take that!  I’m excited to feature the abstract work of South Florida artist Brenda Hope Zappitell all September long!

Brenda Hope Zappitell | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #abstractart #contemporaryart Brenda Hope Zappitell | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #abstractart #contemporaryart Brenda Hope Zappitell | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #abstractart #contemporaryart Brenda Hope Zappitell | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #abstractart #contemporaryart Brenda Hope Zappitell | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #abstractart #contemporaryart

 

These abstract intuitive paintings have such a delicious rhythm to them, they almost seem to pulsate!  Brenda paints on a large scale, most paintings clocking in at more than four feet square, giving her work an enveloping nature.  There are also subtle layers of paint and beautiful little pockets of color and line that become so much more powerful at a larger size.

To see more of Brenda Hope Zappitell‘s work, please visit her website and watch the blog all month long!  Click over to the Artsy Forager Facebook Page to see what gorgeous Zappitell is gracing our cover, along with an album of some of my personal favorites.

All images are via the artist’s website.

Call and Response. Stephanie Clark + Genevieve Robertson

Being an artist can be a lonely endeavor.  We’re often toiling away alone in the studio for hours, even days at a time!  And while we usually need that solitary time to work out our thoughts and feelings into compositions, it can be isolating.  We long for an exchange of ideas.  Santa Fe artist Stephanie Clark teamed up with fellow artist Genevieve Robertson for a long distance, collaborative project appropriately titled, Call and Response.

Stephanie Clark + Genevieve Roberston | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Stephanie Clark + Genevieve Roberston | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Stephanie Clark + Genevieve Roberston | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Stephanie Clark + Genevieve Roberston | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Stephanie Clark + Genevieve Roberston | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart

 

In this artistic game of Marco Polo, one of the two artist creates an image, then sends it to the other artist, who creates her own “response”.  What I find fascinating is how the two artists are challenged with creating a unique, yet complimentary response to the original call.  Some responses repeat colors or patterns, while others hardly reference the call at all yet they still create a harmonious finished composition.

To see more from the Call and Response series and more of Stephanie Clark’s work, please visit her website.  In related news, Stephanie will soon be a contributor to the Artsy Abroad series!  Be on the lookout soon for her first post in which she’ll share all about her experience at the Gibraltar Point Residency!

All images are via the artist’s website.

Heartful Vibrations. Sharon Kingston

In his book, Concerning the Spiritual in Art, Kandinsky wrote of a corresponding vibration happening in the heart upon the receipt of an abstract impression.  To me, that is what the best abstract painting does, sets up a vibration in the heart akin to an experience of a feeling, a place, or a person.  In her paintings, Bellingham artist Sharon Kingston responds to the atmosphere of the landscape of the Pacific Northwest.

Sharon Kingston | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #abstractart #contemporaryart Sharon Kingston | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #abstractart #contemporaryart Sharon Kingston | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #abstractart #contemporaryart Sharon Kingston | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #abstractart #contemporaryart Sharon Kingston | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #abstractart #contemporaryart

 

As another artist obsessed with the aura of the Northwest landscape, what drew me to Kingston’s work was her use of light.  Each canvas subtly glows through the use of muted lavenders and greys, like the glimmer of light through the ubiquitous rain clouds.  But these aren’t one dimensional interpretations– each one is infused not only with the feeling of misty rain, but also with the budding warmth of the that does make its way through the clouds, more often than those who don’t live here might think.

To see more of Sharon Kingston‘s work, please visit her website.

All images via the artist’s website.

Sea Creatures. Victor Grasso

Mr. F and I often find ourselves struggling between our love of the seaside and the snow.  Snow makes us absolutely giddy, but spending this spring and summer near the ocean perhaps has us leaning toward a life near the water.  Each beach walk leaves us in love with the wonder and mystery to be found near the sea.  It is this mythical and mystical magic that artist Victor Grasso captures in his beautifully rendered painting series, The Sea is Calling.

Victor Grasso | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Victor Grasso | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Victor Grasso | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Victor Grasso | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Victor Grasso | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart

 

In this series, Grasso’s modern mermaids seem to revel in the delights of the ocean, becoming one with its depths, transforming into souls of the sea.  The palette of soft greys, inky blacks and warm umbers imitate life in the shallows and the deep, chiaroscuro light falling as if filtered through the water.  He takes us into a world of mystery and revelry, where creatures struggle for survival yet live blissfully unaware of what goes on in the world above.

To see more of Victor Grasso‘s work, please visit his website.  Tell me, Artsies, does the sea call to you?

All images via the artist’s website.  Artist found via Parlor Gallery.

Woven Tales. Lala Abaddon

Artists are often stereotyped as a caricature of sorts– wacky, flittering, unorganized types who thrive on free expression.  And while some of that is often true, many artists find creating in a highly deliberate, meticulous way to be the best fit for their mode of expression.  For Brooklyn artist Lala Abaddon, her painstaking process of weaving photographs to create a new composition has as much to do with expression as any abstract painting.

Lala Abaddon | artsy forager #art #artists #photography #contemporaryart Lala Abaddon | artsy forager #art #artists #photography #contemporaryart Lala Abaddon | artsy forager #art #artists #photography #contemporaryart Lala Abaddon | artsy forager #art #artists #photography #contemporaryart Lala Abaddon | artsy forager #art #artists #photography #contemporaryart

 

Abaddon carefully hand-cuts existing analog photographs and then hand-weaves several together, deconstruction leading to new construction, old stories becoming a part of a new tale.  The artist often juxtaposes intense images with more delicate ones, the compositions sometimes abstract, or hinting at a figure seen behind the visual curtain created by her woven technique.  The texture and depth she creates isn’t just visual, but physical too, so that three dimensions are transformed first into two dimensions by the photographic process, then rebirther again in three dimensional form as a weaving.

Check out the artist at work–

Abaddon process

To see more of Lala Abaddon‘s work, please visit her website.

All art images via the artist’s website, studio image via HiFructose.  Thanks to SCAD curator Aaron Levi Garvey for introducing me to this artist!

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